Connswater Homes Ltd in conjunction with Hugh J O’Boyle Ltd, has constructed 15nr Category 1 apartments on the Lower Braniel Road to provide over-55s with a brand new home.
Connswater Homes has served the housing needs of the residents of East Belfast since 1976 providing quality homes at affordable rents. Since setting up, the Association has continued to grow, expanding the area of services beyond their roots and venturing to North, South & West Belfast, Antrim, Lisburn, Newtownabbey, Newtownards and Portaferry.
The Association aim to build high quality homes responsive to their surrounding context, ensuring creation of a mix of styles to suit the diverse needs of the community as well as working towards the sustainability of the areas in which they develop. Connswater Homes also strive to manage and maintain their homes efficiently and effectively whilst providing the best value for money possible.
Following the identification of a five year projected Social Housing Need in the Castlereagh area; Connswater Homes Ltd began the £1,530,000 project in March 2012 with completion at the beginning of August this year.
The scheme has been developed in the suburban area of Braniel, benefiting from numerous amenities including a GP surgery, pharmacy, community centre, bowling green, primary school and children’s play area. The homes are situated amongst an excellent public transport network making it an ideal location for the active elderly.
Situated on the southern edge of Castlereagh, close to Belfast city centre, the apartments are stepped into the north facing slopes of the Castlereagh Hills and are afforded panoramic views of East Belfast. The properties have been designed and constructed to comply with the Housing Association Design Guide, Code for Sustainable Homes Level 3, Secure by Design standards and current Building Regulations.
The apartments meet stringent energy efficiency standards incorporating renewables such as photovoltaics, rainwater harvesting and heat recovery systems.
Speaking to Premier Construction Magazine, Nadine Ritchie, Development Manager at Connswater Homes said:
“The end user has had a huge impact on the construction of the properties. We have incorporated provision for stair lifts, warden call and level access showers, taking into account the needs of the end user throughout the design and build process.”
On the exterior, the hill slopes and panoramic views take centre stage, hence Connswater worked to integrate their development into the surrounding context through considered landscaping and incorporation of ’green’ walls to facades and planters to public and private amenity spaces. Following on from completion, there are plans to further develop exterior landscaping of the development.
Connswater Homes did however have difficulties to overcome during the construction process due to complex site conditions.
“The greatest difficulties were encountered at the outset. Adverse ground conditions meant that we had to undertake additional site investigation works which in turn brought about redesign of foundations and retaining walls.”
The Association are currently undertaking a development of 31 apartments on Ballygowan Road, Belfast and are planning to commence an £8.2million scheme comprising 98nr units, in the Dunmurry area, early next year.
For more information, please visit www.connswater.org.uk.