CCG and the Council have been working collaboratively to transform communities across East Ayrshire since 2017. Over 200 affordable homes have since been created with each development specifically targeted at supporting town centre regeneration and designed to address localised housing demand, supporting accessibility and specification.
One such example is Witch Road. Located just north of KIlmarnock’s town centre, the site was previously occupied by three-story apartment blocks that were faced with various issues, including difficulties in letting and anti-social behaviour.
The new development, delivered by CCG, in partnership with MAST Architects, set out to achieve a clear contrast to the housing which formerly occupied the site with the creation of 43 one and two-bedroom bungalows specially-aimed at elderly residents who may be affected by a range of mobility and other age-related medical needs, including dementia sufferers. The tenure and resident profile are intended to work towards wider shared outcomes relating to social care and inclusion, adopting a community-centred approach which ensures that residents can be supported within a home environment for as long as possible.
As a baseline standard, all dwellings are designed in accordance with the principles of Housing for Varying Needs and Lifetime Homes, their specification and finishes are informed by a detailed client briefing process. This baseline is expanded within certain properties for dedicated wheelchair use, with a range of design features introduced including bespoke kitchens, future-proofing for tracking hoists, wet floor shower arrangements, and car ports.
Further design elements were also incorporated to support dementia and other cognitive conditions with the use of colour applied to the external finishes as means of wayfinding and enhancing the legibility of individual properties.
A key aspect of the project was to promote interaction, inclusion, and a sense of community among residents. The development includes a “village green,” a south-facing focal point situated on Witch Road, which serves as a social space for residents and visitors. Other amenity and open spaces throughout the site, such as the private resident’s garden, offer tranquil environments for relaxation and social engagement with a landscaping strategy that incorporates a variety of ornamental trees, shrubs, and grass species to provide year-round visual interest and create an attractive and welcoming ambience.
In supporting the Council’s quality and sustainability criteria, CCG’s iQ Timber System was utilised for the build of Witch Road, ensuring enhanced energy performance and reduced heat loss to support lower fuel consumption. Solar panels and sprinkler systems were also installed by CCG Group member Arc-Tech (Scotland).
A range of community benefit initiatives were delivered as a result of the project including 2 new jobs, 4 work placements and an £8,000 donation which was distributed to NWKLEUS, a local community group that set up a warm hub for locals (£4k); Connecting Communities programme at Ayrshire College, free sports clubs at the college where funds were used to buy waterproof jackets for all that attend (£2k) and to provide soup for after training to help tackle food poverty (£2k).
By incorporating innovative solutions and collaborative partnerships, CCG and East Ayrshire Council continue to make significant strides in delivering affordable and future-proofed homes that prioritise the well-being and needs of communities across the regional area.
East Ayrshire Council
Scottish Home Award ‘Age Exclusive’ Development of the Year 2023