The first prototype model is now on display outside RHP’s Richmond office where special guests from the housing industry and government have been invited to have the first look. Built offside using CLT at Legal & General’s revolutionary new factory in Leeds, the 26sqm one-bedroom apartment is the first home to be produced and delivered by the factory.
The apartments will be used by RHP to address the intermediate rental sector – typically working young adults who fall into the bracket of not qualifying for social housing whilst also not being able to afford to live independently in the private sector – relying instead on renting shared accommodation for years before they are able to take their first step on the property ladder. In this way LaunchPod does not seek to challenge GLA Space Standards – it seeks to provide an alternative product to help those that would otherwise have no possibility of living in their own private space. To ensure affordability – RHP are seeking to ensure that the homes are c.80% of the cost of renting a similar sized property in the same area, the so-called ‘London Living Rent’, and that they are priced either at or below the cost of renting a room in a shared house
Wimshurst Pelleriti’s design aims to meet the needs of this sector in the rental market by providing a well-designed modular unit that, through careful consideration of the impact every aspect of the unit has on the user, does not feel small – instead it feels spacious, having high ceilings, a high–spec and a homely feel to it. Indeed, it incorporates many of the features of a much larger flat, such as a dedicated bedroom and bathroom, and distinct areas for cooking, eating and relaxing. There is also sufficient space for guests to visit and stay the night, with aims to provide each unit with its own amenity space outside.
William Wimshurst, Director of Wimshurst Pelleriti said:
“RHP were adamant throughout the R&D process that they did not want us to use space saving gimmicks such as fold down beds that are maintenance heavy and typically associated with small spaces. Their aim throughout was to provide high quality accommodation that did not compromise on quality or the feeling of the space”.
In addition to the benefits to the user, L&G’s building method ensures faster construction, a more eco-friendly end-product and a marked development cost reduction compared with traditional builds, with the use of high quality materials producing a very high standard of build with a very low level of defects.
David Done, RHP’s Chief Executive says:
“I’m really excited about this new product and the opportunities it can create for those struggling to rent in London. I was blown away when I first saw the prototype – it is spacious, modern and high quality. This is just one of the ways we’re aiming to combat the housing crisis and will contribute to our target of investing £250M in new affordable homes over the next eight years.”