Council’s flagship housing development making good progress

The first phase of a major project to build 149 affordable homes in Swindon is now beginning to take shape.

Published: Thursday, 31st December 2020

Queens Drive taking shape 31 Dec 2020

The £34m Queens Drive regeneration scheme will help Swindon Borough Council achieve its pledge of building new affordable homes and develop brownfield sites.

The Council’s contractor Willmott Dixon is currently working on the initial phase of the project where 32 flats and 15 houses will be built on the former George Gay Gardens site.

Currently the flats are up to first floor level, with the second floor of both blocks set to be added at the end of January.

The first house plots are also coming out of the ground and the remainder will be built in January with the first floors being installed the following month, weather permitting. The 47 homes in the first phase are expected to be complete by next winter (2021).

The second phase of the development will involve the demolition of the existing T-blocks and construction of 68 flats and 34 houses. This phase is expected to start in late spring 2021.

Earlier this month, a temporary bridge was installed across Wolsely Avenue to connect the construction site to the compound. This allowed construction workers to move between the two areas with greater ease.

The Queens Drive regeneration project is being funded from a grant from Homes England, Housing Revenue Account (HRA) borrowing, future rents and income generated from the development.

It is the Council’s latest affordable housing scheme following two similar developments in Penhill and one in Cranmore Avenue, Park South.

Councillor Cathy Martyn, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Public Safety, said: “It’s exciting to be able to see such good progress on this site and to watch the homes coming out of the ground.

“We can start to visualise what this development will look like. It’s great that council tenants should be living in the first 47 of these new homes within the next 12 months. We need more affordable housing in Swindon and I’m glad that Swindon Borough Council supports building more council homes for local people.

“This is an important affordable housing project. It’s an important gateway into Swindon. And most importantly it will feature new, high quality, modern homes for local people.”

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