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New partnership to boost delivery of affordable homes in Norwich

Published on Wednesday, 23rd March 2022

Much-needed affordable housing is set to be delivered in Norwich through a new partnership between the city council and Orwell Housing.

The collaboration means council-owned land will be gifted to Orwell Housing for development and sees the council move towards the target of 254 new affordable properties to be built each year, as set out by the Greater Norwich Housing Needs Assessment.

The council will be awarded nomination rights over all new properties built by the partnership, which means that the new homes will be occupied by applicants from the council’s home options register.

Gail Harris, Norwich City Council cabinet member for social housing, said:

“We’re absolutely delighted to be working with Orwell Housing, who we have already worked with on a number of projects across the city.

“The increasing housing need, which exists across the country as well as in Norwich, is not something the council, housing associations or private developers can solve alone, so partnerships like these are more important than ever.

“Hundreds of residents will benefit from this new relationship and the future of the housing delivery programme is looking really positive.”

The partnership between the city council and Orwell Housing will last for an initial term of five years, with a possible extension to ten years if both parties agree. It will allow the council and housing provider to move quickly to apply for funding opportunities and to plan for delivery together.

Next steps will be to finalise the partnership agreement and identify the first sites that have the potential to be developed into affordable housing.

It is hoped the first projects will be submitted for planning permission by Orwell in the next year, with the first new homes ready to welcome residents in early 2024.

Greg Dodds, Assistant Director of Development and Growth at Orwell Housing, said:

“We’re delighted to be selected by Norwich City Council to be their main registered provider partner of new affordable homes.

“We have a longstanding and established relationship with our colleagues at the council, which has seen us deliver over 200 new affordable homes on redundant brownfield sites across the city over recent years.

“We are with really excited about the opportunities and potential that this new long-term partnership will bring and are looking forward to continue to work in partnership to deliver high quality, energy efficient affordable homes for the city.”

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