New homes in Waltham Forest will give families more opportunities across the borough

A building under construction at Wood Street for the Families and Homes Hub.
Published: 4 May 2023
Filed under: Regeneration and Housing

Funding bids from GLA Affordable Housing Funding Programme succeed

People in Waltham Forest can expect to see hundreds of new homes being built across the borough across several sites after the Council was successful in funding bids to the Greater London Authority (GLA).

Many of the new homes will be for social rent or other more affordable options, with local residents and those on the housing waiting list to be prioritised. The new properties will be built to a high standard and in line with the Council’s Our Neighbourhoods approach, so that people can expect to be able to access most of the services and opportunities they need within a short distance of their homes.

In total, £15.4m was secured from the GLA Affordable Housing Programme 2021 - 2026 that will create 77 social homes - a grant allocation of £200,000 per social rented home. Using the previous funding secured from the GLA Affordable Housing Funding Programme 2016 - 2023 the Council has delivered in total 1831 new homes - 800 for social rent, 220 for shared ownership, and 802 for private sale from an overall £69m grant.

Cllr Ahsan Khan, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Housing and Regeneration, said: “We all know that we need to build genuinely affordable new homes to give local people more choices to live in their borough and remain close to their friends, families, and support networks.

“The GLA has given us funding to help us do this because of our track record of success in delivering the improvements that Waltham Forest needs to thrive. Attracting this important inward investment also helps to pay for the infrastructure needed to support our residents. The money that we receive from developers also funds neighbourhood improvements, GP surgeries and health centres, and parks and green spaces. Without this investment we would not be able to enjoy these benefits.”

Cllr Khan views the top of the Central Parade building during construction in October 2022. Cllr Khan is standing and looking at the view wearing a hard hat and high vis jacket. Two members of staff wearing PPE are standing next to him.

Above: Cllr Khan views the top of Central Parade during construction in October 2022.

In Walthamstow, the Juniper House development is providing a total of 91 new homes, of which 23 are for social rent and a further 18 for shared ownership. The development, close to Walthamstow Central station, also contains a 51-place pre-school nursery and a new pocket park will be created for passers-by to sit and relax and make the area greener by summer this year. Two floors of the development will host part of the recently-announced University of Portsmouth London campus from January 2024.

Below: A kitchen inside one of the social rent homes at Juniper House.

Image of a kitchen inside one of the social rent flats at Juniper House

At the nearby Central Parade 21 new homes are being built behind the Grade-II listed building, due to complete this May. 13 of the homes are for social rent with the remaining eight being available for shared ownership. The project has also employed 17 local people and a number of local students have benefitted from four-week placements, earning London Living Wage as they learn important skills.

Below: The Central Parade project during construction in March 2023.

An image of Central Parade, Eastfield House during construction in spring 2023

A bit further across town, the Families and Homes Hub on the site of the former Wood Street Library will provide 67 new homes, 29 for social rent and 38 for shared ownership. The homes will be built above office space hosting the council’s Families and Homes services and a commercial unit for a small shop or café. A new replacement Wood Street library was opened 500 metres from its former site in August 2020 in a purpose-built unit as part of the Marlowe Road redevelopment, which has so far resulted in 319 new homes, with 98 for social rent and a further 47 for shared ownership. As well as the library, a new children’s play area and public plaza has been opened alongside the Marlowe Road Energy Centre and District Heat Network to provide residents with energy.

In the south of the borough, it is hoped the Lea Bridge Station sites development will create 345 new homes, including 72 for London Affordable Rent, 88 for shared ownership, and 185 for private sale. As well as the much-needed new homes the project will also provide 45 jobs, 17 apprenticeships, 138 training opportunities, and 15 paid work placements alongside new commercial space and safe play spaces for children.

Residents of the Avenue Road in Leytonstone will also benefit through a regeneration of the estate that will see the creation of 617 homes, including 250 for social rent, alongside new ground floor spaces for retail, community, and leisure activities. A resident ballot on the plans saw 65 per cent of the estate residents participate, with 92 per cent of respondents voting in favour.

Speaking about the Avenue Road project, Cllr Khan said: “Bringing the residents with us as we plan these improvements to their homes and their neighbourhood has been key. The plans also provide many other benefits for the wider community and improves connectivity to local services, as well as creating new local jobs and apprenticeships for local people during and after the construction work.”