Building work has now started on the £12 million Phoenix Avenue development site in Wokingham creating a new community of 68 homes.
At the official sod-cutting ceremony, to mark the start of construction, a time capsule containing local photographs, residents’ written memories of the old Eustace Crescent flats, and newspaper clippings were buried by members of the Norreys Community Association (NCA) and pupils from All Saints CE Primary School.
The Wokingham Borough Council project is being managed by its company Wokingham Housing Ltd (WHL), in partnership with award-winning developer Hill, chosen by competitive tender to build the homes.
They will range from one bedroom apartments to four bed houses, each with their own communal or private garden, set within carefully designed landscaping for the whole development.
Families are due to start moving in from early spring 2017.
The new buildings replace former Eustace Crescent - now demolished and renamed in a public competition ready for its regeneration.
Joining local residents at the ceremony were representatives from the borough council, WHL, Hill and WHL’s construction consultants Ridge.
“We are very proud to be leading the re-development of the old Eustace Crescent flats in to the new community that will become Phoenix Avenue,” said Bill Flood WHL’s managing director.
“It’s fantastic to be able to show what the council can do by using its own housing company to create a vibrant new community for both today and for future generations, where local people can live in warm, modern, affordable homes which we hope will help them achieve their true potential.”
Cllr John Kaiser, executive member for planning and highways at Wokingham Borough Council, said: “The start of building work on site is always an exciting part of any project because you can see the plans physically start to take shape.
“These are more than just homes for new families. Norreys community deserves this quality development.”
Hill is a proven and award winning developer across London and the south east, with a lot of experience in public sector projects similar to Phoenix Avenue.
It recently won eight categories in the 2015 WhatHouse awards, including the top accolade of WhatHouse? Housebuilder of the Year.