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New modular council homes lifted into position at Parson Cross

Modular homes in Parson Cross

(Pictured above, Paul Dronfield, Cllr Tony Damms, Amanda Grimbleby, Michael Hellewell, Cllr Mike Chaplin)

Four new contemporary homes were lifted into position this week, setting the scene for what could be the beginning of a series of modular homes available for affordable rent across the city.

The modular homes have been precision engineered in a quality controlled factory environment in Yorkshire using a light gauge steel frame. They will look and feel like a traditionally built house, with a brick exterior and a pitched roof. Of excellent quality and built to the same high standard as our traditionally built new council homes, they will also offer excellent environmental performance.

Provided as part of the council’s ambitious Stock Increase Programme, targeted at delivering 3,100 additional new council homes by 2029, this small-scale scheme will test what’s called ‘Modern Methods of Construction’ (MMC) and the council will be assessing how these new homes fare.

Each home is a four-bedroomed family house built on Knutton Crescent at Parson Cross, an area where there is an identified need for this type of affordable home.

Using MMC brings advantages in terms of speed of delivery, quality assurance and energy efficiency, as well as less construction activity and disruption in the local area compared to a traditional building site.

Councillor Paul Wood, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety at Sheffield City Council said:

“Our aim is to build more quality, warm and affordable homes where they are most needed across the city. I think they look rather impressive and it's interesting to see how the homes come together as they are lifted on to site and installed with speed and precision. We look forward to asking people what they think of how they look and importantly what it feels like living in a house like this, when families take residence.

“Of course, we’ll be fully assessing the benefits and opportunities that homes like this could bring to the city to see if more of them should be built. As our first step in to MMC for new council homes we have intentionally started small. We hope that building homes in this way in the future on a larger scale will help deliver wider benefits including cost reductions. We’ll be learning from this project, assessing what these homes are like to manage and maintain and how we would do things differently if there are further phases. It’s pretty exciting being a city that welcomes innovation, whilst offering affordable and efficient living, to those who most need a council home.”

Amanda Grimbleby, Partnerships and Business Development Director at M-AR Off Site said:

“We are extremely proud to be working in partnership with Sheffield City Council to deliver their first MMC affordable homes in the City. The homes at Knutton Crescent are built to high quality standards and are extremely air-tight, significantly reducing heat loss and reducing fuel bills for families.

"Working with the Sheffield City Council team has been absolutely great, they are not only a collaborative authority but they are also very forward thinking and could lead the way housing delivery is approached in the future, ensuring that much needed affordable homes are provided quicker, to high quality standards which are more efficient, greener and sustainable for generations to come.

"It has been a pleasure to be involved in this project, and for me the real success here is not just the homes we have delivered in a short timescale, but the fact we have been able to progress the construction of the homes in our factory during the COVID-19 pandemic. What we have achieved here is a credit not only to the M-AR team but also to Sheffield City Council who we have worked closely with throughout the project. It takes a team effort to do this, so thank you to all for your proactive approach in making this happen for the city of Sheffield.”