Partnership agreed for the delivery of Net Zero Carbon Ready Homes at Chelmsford Garden Community

Beaulieu green space

Developers Countryside Zest, Chelmsford City Council, and Homes England have agreed to  the funding of the first stage of work which will see an early phase of the Chelmsford Garden Community being delivered as net zero-carbon ready homes, as proposed by the Government’s emerging Future Homes Standard.

The award-winning Beaulieu and Channels developments are among the first neighbourhoods being built as part of Chelmsford Garden Community with over 1,500 homes already completed. The Beaulieu neighbourhood is already identified as an exemplar development in line with the national design guidance and decarbonisation plans.

Chelmsford City Council’s newly adopted local plan allocates further land meaning the Garden Community will have 10,000+ homes when complete and a successful Housing Infrastructure Fund bid is delivering a new mainline rail station and bypass to serve the new community.

Countryside Zest has started work on preparing a detailed planning application for a demonstrator site of around 80 net zero carbon ready homes at Beaulieu.  Chelmsford City Council and Homes England are working in partnership with Countryside Zest by helping fund some of the initial research required to move to net zero carbon and will share this learning to help inform future zones at the Garden Community and other developments.

A planning application for the net zero carbon ready demonstrator site is anticipated to be submitted in late 2021 with construction complete in late 2023.

Iain McPherson, Group Chief Executive at Countryside Properties said:

At Countryside, we have a coveted history of partnerships and collaborations, and we are proud to work with London Quadrant, Chelmsford City Council, and Homes England to deliver net zero carbon ready homes at Beaulieu. We at Countryside, are strongly committed to tackle the challenges caused by climate change and towards becoming a low carbon society. With our vision and approach to sustainability we hope that our development at Beaulieu turns out to be a place people love to live.”

Cllr Stephen Robinson, Leader of Chelmsford City Council added:Addressing climate change is a key priority for Chelmsford City Council demonstrated by our declaration of an environmental and ecological emergency. It is critical that new homes are built to the highest environmental standards and we hope that this exciting and innovative project will allow us to demonstrate how net zero carbon ready homes can be considered the norm in all new developments.”

Fionnuala Lennon, Head of Garden Communities, Homes England, commented:

“The proposed garden communities supported by Homes England provide an ideal opportunity to showcase how net zero carbon ready development can be implemented at scale. The proposals at Chelmsford Garden Community are particularly exciting as the focus is on a volume housebuilder on a large development zone and the learning from this project is hoped to be transferable to many similar developments across the country.”