Estate Regeneration Project - Get Involved
by Crystal Nicholson, Graduate
As part of our commitment towards exploring new ways of being transparent and engaging with our residents, we’ve launched an exciting new project all about estate regeneration consultation and we want you to get involved!
Network Homes is reviewing how we consult with residents on estate regeneration projects and creating a new procedure to make sure that residents are at the heart of the regeneration process.
If you are a resident who was consulted during the regeneration of Stockwell Estate in Lambeth, Rectory Park in Ealing or The Ridgeway in Hertford, or are just keen to find out more, then please get in touch! You can email Crystal Nicholson on firstname.lastname@example.org.
As regeneration experts, we’ve led on a number of major regeneration schemes in London and Hertfordshire, ranging from around 150 homes to nearly 1,500 homes.
Regenerating estates allows us to maximise the use of valuable existing land as well as transform often run-down homes into high-quality housing. Regeneration also allows us to improve the quality of life for the community, restore local pride and boost the local economy.Crystal Nicholson, Graduate
The Regeneration Process
Estate regeneration is a major process which takes a number of years and a huge amount of planning. Here are some of the major parts of the process:
- The regeneration team will develop a masterplan and neighbourhood plan. This will begin with an initial assessment, where the team will survey the area and engage with stakeholders (residents, businesses, schools, local authorities and community organisations) to seek out areas that particularly need improving. The regeneration team will also carry out a housing needs assessment which will inform them on existing housing conditions, including overcrowding, under-occupation and health/mobility issues.
- A pre-construction consultation with residents is carried out. This is essential during the planning phase because residents have detailed knowledge of the area and issues faced.
- Existing residents are temporarily vacated to another home for the regeneration to proceed, this is what we call a ‘decant’. Each resident will receive a one-to-one visit so that the options available to the household are explained. Residents will always have a right to return once the regeneration is complete.
- Local authorities require developers to make positive contributions to the local community, in order to balance the pressure created by new developments. These are known as Section 106 agreement Through the section 106 agreement, we have an employment and training programme which offers free advice, support and work opportunities for residents.
There are several guidelines which shape the way we carry out resident consultation.
In 2016, the government published the Estate Regeneration National Strategy, which outlines how landlords, developers and local authorities should engage with residents throughout estate regeneration schemes. This Includes early and ongoing engagement and involvement, a resident majority over important decision-making, compensation for residents whose homes are demolished and a residents right to return.
In 2018, The Mayor of London published Better Homes for Local People, which further supports the importance of putting residents at the heart of plans during estate regeneration.
The report states that consultation should be:
- Transparent – all the issues and options should be set out in clear, accessible and nontechnical language, with information that has influenced any decisions being shared as early as possible.
- Extensive – every reasonable effort should be made to engage with as broad a range of groups as possible, including primarily the residents of an estate, and also those living and working on or near it.
- Responsive – consultation should result in clear actions that arise directly from the views expressed by respondents.
- Meaningful – views expressed during the process should be considered, and, where landlords do not agree with responses, they should give explanations for the alternative course of action that they have taken.
At Network Homes we believe that going the extra mile for our residents is important. Hearing from you and collaborating on your experience will further enhance our transparency and resident engagement agenda, allowing you to be a part of creating an independent guide.