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Our plans for building new homes in Colchester

We have ambitious plans to deliver up to 350 new council homes for the borough’s residents by 2024.

IN THIS ARTICLE

  • Ambitions and goals
  • ‘Districts building for the future' report
  • Our housebuilding plans

We aim to achieve our ambitious goal through a wide range of initiatives and working in partnership with our wholly owned housing company, Colchester Amphora Homes Limited (CAHL).

We are looking at alternative ways of delivering the much-needed social housing to support the people on our housing waiting list, borrowing funding through the Housing Revenue Account (HRA). This is a ring-fenced account separate to other council accounts and is only used for improving or increasing affordable housing.

This has been made possible by the Government scrapping its one per cent rent reduction, which was in place from 2015 until the end of 2018, as well as removing a previously imposed “debt cap” so that councils can once again borrow funds to build affordable homes.

Recognition of our housebuilding plans


Our ambitions have been recognised in a major report from the Local Government Information Unit (LGIU) and District Councils’ Network: ‘Districts building for the future: The impact of the removal of the HRA borrowing cap' (PDF, 3MB).

Issued in 2019, the report highlights Colchester Borough Council’s full commitment of its Cabinet to increase the level of affordable housebuilding.  It states: "The council has increased its housebuilding plans over the short, medium and long-term, including mixed-tenure and affordable schemes, and an additional phase of garage site development."

Our plans include:

  • building 8 new homes on a vacant site at Military Road
  • building 16 new homes on former garage sites at Hardings Close, Buffett Way and Scarfe Way
  • buying back 50+ former Council properties using the “Right to Buy Back” clauses 
  • purchasing 100+ properties on the open market
  • redeveloping the sheltered housing provision at Elfreda House (increasing numbers and improving quality)
  • delivering 120+ affordable homes (30%) within developments totalling 400+ homes across sites at Creffield Road, Mill Road and St Runwald Street being developed by Colchester Amphora Homes Ltd
  • bringing forward more garage sites before 2024 in a third phase of development sites
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