COVID-19 Practice Updates
As is the case with pollution and our environment, we have seen some positive effects to counterbalance the negative impact COVID-19 has had so far on the construction industry and our business.
We were able to redirect resources from mothballed onsite projects to complete a major change-of-use planning application to create 32 homes for homeless families for the Lambeth Council while working and conducting meetings remotely. This will be our first project that is likely to be determined at a Virtual Planning Committee, and we have already had 3 successful remote Pre-planning Application meetings with Westminster, Hillingdon & Tower Hamlets Planning Departments to review initial proposals for St. Louise, Northern & Shell and Kings Paget projects. We are expecting planning applications for all of these exciting shared-living schemes to be completed and submitted in Q2 of 2020. Together they will provide 200 residential apartments, 133 student, 121 apart hotel and 64 co-living units utilising both traditional and modern methods of construction.
We are also busy working with QIQO Living on new proposals for a quality and affordable accommodation for London's key-workers even before the announcement of the 'Homes for Heroes' campaign. Everyone in the office appreciates the essential work key-workers are doing for all of us at the moment and we want to make sure they will have the best accommodation choices available in the future.
While the work has stopped or slowed down with projects on site, and a lack of confidence in the market continues to affect our industry and workload, we are encouraged by the fact that new inquiries are still coming in and translating into live projects such as the new Horley scheme. We have also seen some of our old projects resurfacing and are being asked to reevaluate existing sites to provide alternative feasibility options and planning strategies.
If you believe, as we do, in the underlying need for residential and shared-living accommodation in London and the South East then perhaps now is the time to start working towards a new housing solution for the 'new normal' of a post COVID-19 UK.