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Orbit scoops two top national design awards

Orbit is celebrating after scooping two national housing design awards.

Orbit's award-winning Erith Park development

Orbit is celebrating after scooping two national housing design awards.

Erith Park in south-east London was presented with ‘Best Regeneration Project’ and Fordham House in Stratford-upon-Avon was awarded ‘Best Build for Rent Development’ in the UK at the prestigious Inside Housing awards 2019.

The Inside Housing Development Awards are an opportunity for landlords, developers and architects across the UK to showcase their best developments and teams.

Orbit’s Erith Park development in Bexley has seen the transformation of the former Larner Road estate where, over the course of six years, seven tower blocks were replaced with 587 medium-rise, high quality new homes.

Working with development partners, Wates Residential and architects Broadway Malyan, Orbit has transformed the area into a thriving community, with a mixture of affordable rent, shared ownership, rent-to-buy and market sale homes.

Maggie McCann, Director of Regeneration and Partnerships at Orbit, said: “We’re delighted to be recognised for this prestigious housing award and even more proud that Erith Park has become such a hub for the local community and people in Erith. It was our strong partnership with our development partner, Wates Residential, that allowed us to turn this dream into a reality and we look forward to continuing our work together at Park East.”

Once an unpopular council estate blighted by crime, anti-social behaviour and a poor environment, Erith Park has emerged as a sought-after and thriving mixed-tenure neighbourhood. Working with local people throughout, Orbit has revived community spirit while building high-quality new homes, amenities and public spaces.

Community input was key to the success of Erith Park and to address the challenges faced from the outset, a core group of residents were consulted to consider all options. This led to unanimous support for large-scale demolition and rebuilding.

As result of the work carried out, crime has reduced, job and training opportunities have increased and there is a much stronger sense of community. The strong residents’ voice approach at Erith Park has also created meaningful social value and a lasting legacy.

Continuing their success, Orbit and Wates Residential are currently embarking on another venture at the neighbouring Arthur Street site – recently announced as the Park East development.

Fordham House comprises of 82 high-quality private rented apartments, with a focused letting strategy to support local workers key to the Stratford economy.  Earlier this year Fordham House was also awarded Residential Property of the Year at the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) awards, West Midlands.

Adam Cooper, Commercial Director at Orbit, said:  “We are delighted to say that Stratford now has a multi-award winning development. For Fordham House to receive this pretigious award is outstanding. The Inside Housing Development Awards only feature the best of the best throughout the whole of the UK and they really focus on quality and design.”

Each home at Fordham House is designed with minimum maintenance requirements and the latest in cutting edge technology. Digital self-service is at the heart of the development’s concept, with information for new residents, door entry, account management, messaging and fault-reporting all available via an app, developed specifically for residents there. With online shopping such an important part of most people’s lives, smart parcel boxes will be fitted for couriers to make secure deliveries – for which residents will get an instant text alert. Every apartment has high-speed fibre broadband for TV, internet and phone, allowing people to be online within ten minutes of moving in. Security is paramount and Fordham House has the Gold Secure by Design Standard, is fully-protected by a colour CCTV system, remote-controlled parking bollards and plentiful, fob-operated storage for bikes.

Fordham House sits on a centrally located site once occupied by a redundant office building, giving residents easy access on foot or bicycle into the town and work places.

Work started on site in 2016 and took two years to complete with all apartments now fully let. The development was brought to market through a partnership between Stratford Town Trust, Orbit, ABD Developments and Robothams Architects, with Deeley Construction as design and build contractors. Fordham House is owned and managed by Orbit, with Stratford Town Trust continuing to retain the freehold.