Modular homes could be the answer to Watford’s temporary accommodation shortage

Modular homes may be the answer to part of the UK’s housing crisis and next month, Watford Borough Council will consider a pilot development of its own.

Published: Thursday, 9th March 2017
Balmoral Road site map
Balmoral Road site map

Demand for temporary accommodation exceeds the current supply and quite often the council is forced to use more expensive options to support the increasing number of people who have lost their homes as a result of struggling with rapidly rising rent and mortgage rises. 

The council has been exploring options to increase supply, and modular homes look very promising.

Modular homes are built in sections in a factory and then transported to the site where foundations have already been laid. They should be less susceptible to weather delays during construction and, once on site, can be installed quickly and efficiently to deliver good quality accommodation. This method of off-site construction should also mean less disruption, noise and mess for local residents in the selected areas.

Watford Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Property and Housing, Cllr Stephen Johnson said:  “It’s clear that a more sustainable supply of temporary accommodation is required and modular homes could be part of the answer. They are of good quality inside and out.

“If approved by Cabinet, the pilot will seek to demonstrate the benefits and test the practicalities of using modular construction in Watford. It should offer a lot of flexibility in terms of design and construction and by employing an architect to create the plans we can tailor to meet local requirements.

“I would expect the pilot to deliver a number of good quality units that fit the look and feel of the surrounding neighbourhood, which is very important, as well as ensuring a number of families have the support they need.”

A site in Callowland has been identified and Cabinet will consider whether to approve the modular homes pilot when they meet in early March.

 

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