INNOVATION IN HOUSING & PLANNING
Stratford City
The Client
Stanhope and London & Continental Railways
The Background
Stratford City is a significant part of the Olympic City Master Plan, set to deliver one of the largest regeneration projects in Europe. The project consisted of 5 million sq ft of commercial space, 2 million sq ft retail and 4,900 homes.
The Requirement
Levvel were appointed in 2004 to realise the following outcomes:
Agreement of a Section 106 Obligation, providing affordable housing price certainty and a good mix of housing solutions for a wide variety of income groups
Preparation of detailed Viability advice to assist in negotiations with the Mayor and Council
Merger of planning consents within the Olympic City Master Plan
Preparation of an alternative solution for affordable housing which could be delivered and owned by the private sector
 
 
 
Why Levvel?
Levvel’s distinctive, holistic approach, which allows for a series of interlocking skill-sets to be used for each facet of the consultation and negotiation process, meant that they were uniquely placed to mediate between the Council and the development partners. Using this methodology, conventional planning and housing practices were adapted and applied in new ways to achieve the desired result.
The Levvel Solution
Levvel developed a negotiation strategy and new ‘whole market’ approach for the assessment of the viability of the affordable housing package that has since become accepted as a model of best practice standard across the U.K. Then, using the complementary skills of the consulting team, creative and fresh solutions were applied to each aspect of the planning and policy negotiations from housing need and market demand analysis to the final delivery mechanisms. Finally a cascade mechanism was built into the Section 106 Obligation to cap the developer’s risk for the provision of affordable housing.
The Outcome
Planning consent for Stratford City was achieved in 2006 with a much reduced affordable housing requirement of just 30% set against the Mayor’s then emerging target of 50%. Since then Levvel successfully commenced the merging of the Stratford City consents within the Olympic Master Plan through the provision of a Site Wide Housing Strategy.
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