Link completes new development of 161 affordable homes in Edinburgh

Ross Martin, chairman of Link Group Ltd (left) and Kevin Stewart, minister for local government and housing
Ross Martin, chairman of Link Group Ltd (left) and Kevin Stewart, minister for local government and housing

Link Group Ltd’s new affordable housing development at City Park, Edinburgh has been officially opened by the minister for local government and housing, Kevin Stewart.

The development, located off Ferry Road in Crewe Toll, was built over three phases and benefitted from £7.3 million funding from the Scottish Government.

Built by J Smart & Co (Contractors) Plc, City Park comprises 161 homes for social rent, mid market rent and New Supply Shared Equity. J Smart also built 40 homes for outright sale.

Link worked with two support organisations throughout the construction of the development to facilitate housing provision suited to specific needs.

Six wheelchair accessible properties from phases one and two were purchased by Scottish Veterans’ Garden City Association (SVGCA) Houses for Heroes on a shared equity basis. Leonard Cheshire Disability then leased two ground-floor wheelchair properties in phase three for mid market rent.

The properties have been built to the Silver Standard of Sustainability, with ‘A’ rated gas combi-boilers, high levels of insulation and solar panels, creating warm, comfortable, energy efficient homes that are easy and economical to run.

All of Link’s construction tenders include a commitment from contractors to deliver employment and apprenticeships as part of its CITB Construction Skills Client-Based approach integrated in its procurement process. J Smart exceeded Link’s requirements with the number of new jobs created, employing 155 people and 21 local subcontractors since the project began in March 2014.

Ross Martin, chairman of Link Group Ltd, said: “We are very pleased to have been supported by the Scottish Government and the City of Edinburgh Council to enable us to build new, high quality, energy efficient homes in Edinburgh.

“We are one of six Registered Social Landlords who have a joint commitment to build 8,000 affordable and low cost homes in the capital over the next decade. We are currently on site at three other developments in Edinburgh at Granton Harbour, Ferrymuir and Gilmerton Dykes where a further 185 affordable homes will be built by mid 2019.”

Mr Stewart added: “Making sure everyone has a safe, warm and affordable home is central to our drive for a fairer and more prosperous Scotland. Our ambition to deliver 50,000 affordable homes during this Parliament, as part of our ‘More Homes Scotland’ approach, will help to deliver this.

“I’m delighted to officially open the final phase of this popular housing development, providing 161 new units including a mix of social rent, mid-market rent and shared equity homes that suit the needs of local people. City Park is a great example of how partnership working can deliver high quality, energy efficient homes that are a very welcome addition to the supply of affordable housing in Edinburgh.”

Councillor Gavin Barrie, convener of the housing and economy committee for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Edinburgh has a shortage of affordable housing and this significant new development minutes away from Crewe Toll will provide much needed high quality, energy efficient, affordable homes in the north of Edinburgh.

“This site is a perfect example of how the council works with partners to deliver affordable and accessible housing to meet a range of needs. The council and Link worked closely with Scottish Veterans Garden City Association to provide four homes for disabled veterans. Both Link and the Scottish Veterans Garden City Association are valuable partners and I look forward to working closely with them in the future.”

SVGCA chief executive Peter Minshall said: “This development exemplifies joint working at its best. We are grateful to both Link group and the City of Edinburgh Council for their vision to include our client interest group in this housing programme.”

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