Council tenants begin to move into new homes using the latest energy-saving technologies on Gressel Lane

One of the family homes opened on a new development off Gressel Lane.
Published: Friday, 16th February 2024

Works on 36 new family council houses using the latest energy-saving technologies have been completed off Gressel Lane, East Birmingham, and council tenants have begun to move in.

Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust, Birmingham City Council’s brand name for new homes, has built the new council homes with Morro Partnership as part of a pilot project to build new high-quality, eco-friendly, cheaper-to-heat homes.

The development was partly funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Midlands Engine.

As part of the council's Route to Zero commitment to addressing climate change and reducing fuel poverty for its tenants, all the new homes include heat pumps, solar panels, electrical storage batteries, and other technologies that prevent the waste of heat and water.

For the next 12 months, the council will monitor the new technologies to analyse their effectiveness, gather information and learning inform future developments, and provide ongoing support to families.

Councillor Jayne Francis, cabinet member for housing and homelessness, said: 

"It is wonderful to see these modern, high-quality homes finished and new council tenants moving in.

"The new technology in these homes will cut the energy bills of council tenants and make them safer and warmer.

"We are in a national housing crisis, and four out of five homes in Birmingham's housing stock are over 50 years old. So this development will help provide much-needed warm, safe, and sustainable homes for our tenants.

"Our priority is ensuring all our tenants and leaseholders live in warm, safe, and sustainable homes. For this reason, the council is investing a record £5bn over the next 30 years in improving existing council homes, in addition to building new ones.

"I look forward to seeing more of our tenants living in warm, safe, and sustainable homes like these in the future."

Ms R Sultana, a resident who has moved into one of the new properties at Gressel Lane, said:

"I cannot express how relieved I am to have been offered a property by Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust, which is not only willing but happy to accommodate necessary adaptations.

"The prospect of moving to a property that has been designed to cater to my daughter's mobility needs as a wheelchair user is incredibly promising.

"The fact that this new home is eco-friendly is an added bonus, and I am excited about the positive impact it will have on the environment.

"This move is going to be life-changing for us, as it will provide my daughter with the space to rehabilitate and grow, and finally, a place that feels like a true sanctuary.

"This new accommodation is just the fresh start we needed as a family, and I am eager to see the positive impact it will have for the rest of our lives."

Councillor Jayne Francis, added: 

"The new homes will play a vital role in helping us to achieve our net zero goals, as our housing stock is a significant contributor to carbon emissions in the city.

"Birmingham has the country's most extensive council housing stock, over 60,000 homes, so the task is significant.

"We will use what we have learned building these houses at Gressel Lane to review, modify, and improve our approach to house building. 

"This pilot gives us a strong foundation to ensure our social housing stock can meet the needs of the future."

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