28th October 2014

Town centre housing scheme wins top award

The first phase of the new Urban 180 development at Overend Street, West Bromwich, has won another prestigious excellence award.

The project formerly called Eastern Gateway – of 80-plus contemporary homes in the heart of West Bromwich town centre, has been announced as winner in the ‘Social or Affordable Housing‘ category in the LABC’s West Midlands Regional Building Excellence Awards.

The project, already a winner in April 2014 in the Building Excellence Awards for the West Midlands Metropolitan area, has now beaten off competition from the Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Shropshire regions.

The partnership project between the Accord Group, the Homes and Communities Agency and Sandwell Council was nominated by the council’s building control team, Sandwell Building Consultancy who provided the approvals for the plans and the project’s on site construction. Eco2Solar installed the solar panels on the properties.

Projects have been judged on a range of criteria relating to sustainability, innovation, building performance and project management. 

The striking appearance of the development has been designed by Accord’s InDesign team helped to set the development apart from many similar schemes.

The construction partners, Balfour Beatty, will accept the award at a ceremony in September and the project will now go on to be judged at the national awards, to be held in November 2014.

Sandwell Building Consultancy is currently working with Balfour Beatty and the Accord Group on Phase 2 of the project which will provide a further 34 new homes and apartments that will be completed later this year.

A new landmark building to include 24 further affordable apartments and some community enterprise space will also be developed as a third phase at the corner of Bull Street and High Street.

Funding for this phase has been secured under the Homes and Communities Agency’s Affordable Homes Guarantees Programme (2015) and is due to commence from March 2015.

Councillor Ian Jones, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for jobs and economy, said: “This is excellent news on a scheme which is bringing much needed homes into the town centre area.

“It is good to know that these eye-catching new homes will help to bring new life into the shopping centre which is being transformed with a number of exciting new projects.”