Aster to start work on one of its biggest land-led projects

South of England and London housing association, Aster Group, is set to begin work on one if its largest land-led schemes to date after completing on a land purchase for a 169-home development near Christchurch, Dorset.

Aster is due to break ground on the mixed-tenure site of the former police station and magistrates court in Bargates in the autumn.

The scheme will deliver:

-         23 homes for affordable rent

-         30 homes to purchase through affordable ownership schemes including shared ownership and discounted starter homes

-         77 homes and 39 sheltered accommodation units to purchase on the open market.

The new neighbourhood will include a range of one and two-bedroom flats, and houses varying from two to five-bedrooms.

Alongside gardens and communal landscaping for residents, 185 parking spaces and flexible commercial/community space will also be provided.

A new road connecting Bargates and Barrack Road will offer vehicular access to the homes for residents, and a through route for pedestrians and cyclists.

Amanda Williams, Chief Investment Officer at Aster Group, said: “Bargates has been almost 10 years in the making and will be one of our largest ever land-led schemes to date. We’re pleased to finally be making a start on site soon.

“Like a lot of coastal areas, there’s a distinct lack of affordable homes available for local people and we hope that in providing a range of tenures we’ll be helping to plug some of the gap.

“We’re confident in our construction partner, Countryside Partnerships’ ability to deliver these new homes with a mark of quality. The palette of building materials has been specifically chosen to ensure the new homes respect the surroundings and the conservation area. When combined with the carefully considered combination of tenures, these homes will create a thriving neighbourhood that will support the long-term prosperity of the area.”

The development will also support the wider community of Christchurch by contributing over £1m through the section 106 agreement towards education, highways works and improvements to existing local open public spaces among others.

Aster Group’s £2.3bn investment plan will see the Group deliver 10,000 homes over the next seven years. In its last financial year, nearly 400 (395) of 1,312 homes built were delivered through Aster’s land-led programme.

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