PLANS to build 82 apartments for the district’s ‘key workers’ – the likes of teachers and nurses – have been described as ‘ground-breaking.’
The Warwick House building – owned by Stratford Town Trust – is a former headquarters of Stratford District Council but has remained empty for some years.
In December last year, the Orbit Group housing association submitted plans to provide one- and two-bedroom flats and the scheme was recently given the green light by members of Stratford District Council’s planning committee.
The partnership between Orbit Homes and ABD Developments LLP, supported by Stratford Town Trust, will see 82 flats built for workers such as teachers, NHS staff and others to privately rent ‘at a reasonable price.’
In what the town trust say is a “Midland first”, the flats are aimed at bridging the gap between salaries and high private rents
The existing building at Warwick House – on the corner of Birmingham Road and Clopton Road – will be demolished to make way for 64 one bed flats and 18 two bed flats, which will be initially marketed to key workers employed in public services.
Chris Jones, development director at Orbit Homes, said: “Currently many employers express concern their staff travel some distance to work due to the high cost of accommodation locally.
“This makes it difficult to attract and retain employees as well as adding to the congestion caused by commuters travelling into Stratford each day. This development will provide high-quality accommodation at a reasonable cost.”
Helen Munro, chief executive of Stratford Town Trust, said: ”This is a really ground-breaking concept and one we are so pleased to support.
“It is absolutely right those working hard in our hospitals and schools can afford to live in Stratford. We are confident this plan will have a positive impact throughout the town.”
And Tarquin Murray-Holgate of Colliers International, who advised Stratford Town Trust, added: “This is a pioneering scheme for Stratford.
“The new development will remove the existing unattractive 1970s redundant office building and provide a landmark scheme to meet key worker housing demand.”
Work on the homes is expected to be completed within the next 18 months.
An artist’s impression of how the flats at Warwick House will look. (s)