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Levitt Bernstein wins London housing scheme through public ballot

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Levitt Bernstein has become the latest practice in London selected to design a Community Land Trust (CLT) housing scheme via a public ballot

The practice took part in a ‘pick an architect’ event on the weekend, competing against Peter Barber Architects, Bell Phillips and Sarah Wigglesworth Architects.

Levitt Bernstein will now draw up a 40-home scheme for London CLT on the Cable Street site in east London, a plot of disused shrubland formerly owned by Transport for London (TfL).

The event, arranged by Tower Hamlets Citizens at a local church last Sunday saw 47 members of the public cast a vote.

Irene Craik, Levitt Bernstein director said: ’The ballot process was an intense, but thoroughly enjoyable experience talking with so many informed and committed local people.

’We are very excited and honoured to be chosen to help bring their vision to reality and to be working with one of the pioneering CLT groups.’

CLTs are a form of community-led housing revolving around ’people, not profits’ and are set up by people to develop and manage their homes. 

Homes are priced according to average local incomes and are kept permanently affordable through a resale price covenant which requires all residents to sell the property on at a price according to local earnings.

Cable Street is one of two sites earmarked for community-led housing under the Mayor of London’s Small Sites, Small Builders pilot programme.

The other, Christchurch Road in south London, held a similar public ballot earlier this month to find its own architect.

The commission for 27 homes was won by RCKa, who saw off competition from Mole Architects, Reed Watts and 15-40 Architecture.

In addition to the two CLT sites, eight other sites were released under the Small Sites programme, including Beechwood Avenue in Finchley where Peter Barber Architects recently won planning permission for 97 homes.

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