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Council to build 121 affordable rental flats on office block site

An office block has been bought by Crawley Borough Council with the potential to add 121 new homes to its affordable housing stock.

Purchase of Longley House in Southgate was completed last week, and the site already has planning approval for apartments to replace the existing building.

With brownfield land in the borough in such short supply, the council was keen to secure this site for affordable housing rather than see it developed by a private enterprise. 

Councillor Ian Irvine, Cabinet member for Housing, Crawley Borough Council said:

"This is another significant purchase by Crawley Borough Council and an excellent opportunity to add 121 properties to Crawley Homes for affordable rental in the town. We are constantly seeking opportunities to increase the rental stock available to Crawley Homes and locations like Longley House give us the chance to build high-quality new homes in place of under-utilised sites and reduce some of the pressure on our housing waiting list."

The £1.5 million purchase was made from Crawley Homes’ existing acquisitions budget, and grant funding will be sought to assist with construction costs.

As a result of water saving measures installed in current Crawley Homes properties, this scheme has been able to overcome the restriction placed on new residential developments due to their impact on Crawley’s water supply. 

News of this purchase follows approval in December of plans to have 300 affordable apartments constructed at nearby Telford Place, replacing a temporary car park. Ninety-five of these will be affordable rented homes operated by the council. 

Construction at both sites is expected to begin later this year.


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