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Islington’s in-house architects win planning for new social housing

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Islington Council’s in-house architecture team has won permission for new council homes, the first in a new batch of projects on estates across the north London borough 

The council’s planning committee approved designs for 24 new homes on the Harvist Estate in Holloway near Arsenal’s football stadium.

The new homes will be built in two terraced blocks ranging from two to three storeys in height and will include a mix of two-bed, three-bed and four-bed houses and flats.

The 10-strong team of architects, established in 2009 when the local authority built its first council homes in 20 years, has a number of other schemes currently in the pipeline.

Paul Tobin, who heads up the team, said the council’s approach was to identify underused sites on existing estates and to build homes on infill plots without resorting to ‘large-scale demolition’ of existing homes.

He said: ’This approach necessarily restricts the size of individual projects. We currently have five projects in planning or on site, which will deliver 104 new homes in total when built.

’The council is investing in in-house architects because, aside from the fact that having in-house professionals can be more cost-effective in the long run, the team has local knowledge of the borough and its buildings and spends a lot of time talking to residents about their concerns and needs.’

On Elthorne Estate, a 1970s estate in Archway, the team has a set of proposals currently under consideration for 46 new dwellings and a new community centre.

And plans have been submitted for a set of three new terraced houses in Ringcroft Street at the end of a terrace damaged by Second World War bombing.

The team’s completed schemes include award-winning Armour Close in Caledonian Road, comprising four courtyard houses in a constricted backland site (pictured below).

Islington council aims to build 550 new homes for social rent between 2019 and 2022, said Tobin.

Armour 1

Armour 1

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