Construction work is now under way at the former Taberner House site, bringing closer to reality a stunning new development which will provide hundreds of new homes in Croydon’s town centre.
Formerly home to the council offices, the site will provide 513 homes within four buildings ranging from 13-35 storeys, with a mix of affordable, for sale and rental units, as well as new public realm, a children’s play space and a new café. At least 40 per cent of the units will be designated as affordable.
Croydon Council leader Tony Newman was on site to break ground as construction work began on this major regeneration project. He was joined by Steve Sanham, managing director of residential developer HUB, who are delivering the scheme in collaboration with social impact investor Bridges Fund Management. The buildings have been designed by Stirling Prize winning architect Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, with Grant Associates working on the landscaping.
The development will also create a new high-quality public space as The Queen’s Gardens is enhanced with new landscaping. HUB and Grant Associates are working closely with local people, in a large collaborative design process, coordinated by consultant Kaizen, to understand their ideas and priorities to ensure these are reflected in the final design of The Gardens. Old Palace School pupils, who are involved in the design process, were also on site for the ground-breaking.
Due to the proximity of the Taberner House site to The Queen’s Gardens, a section of the park will be inaccessible during construction. However, upon completion, the revitalised Gardens will be returned to the community, with additional public realm, new landscaping and amenities.
“I’m delighted to see work get under way on this important town centre site and that those hundreds of affordable homes will soon become available to local people. It’s also great that The Queen’s Gardens, a much-loved public space and valued oasis in our town centre, is going to be revitalized with the full involvement of local residents.”
Councillor Tony Newman, leader of the council
As construction work commenced HUB and Bridges, the developers of the Taberner House scheme, agreed a £100m deal with Legal & General that will see the UK’s largest investment manager take ownership of 251 homes for rent.
Upon completion in 2021, Legal & General will take ownership of a 35-storey building at the heart of the scheme, which comprises 251 rental units, with a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, as well as rooftop amenity space, communal facilities on the ground and first floors and a ground floor commercial unit.
Another one of the blocks comprising 90 homes will be transferred to Croydon Affordable Homes and let entirely to local people at a maximum of 65 per cent of market rent.
Steve Sanham, HUB Managing Director, said: “Taberner House is a hugely important development for Croydon and after an extensive process of engagement with the community and other stakeholders we are very excited that work on the scheme is now underway. The deal with Legal & General is a huge vote of confidence not only in the quality of the scheme that we are bringing forward but in Croydon itself – a vibrant, innovative and dynamic town with a proud history and a strong identity.”
Simon Ringer, Head of Property Funds at Bridges, said: “There’s a pressing need for more affordable and lower-cost housing in London. We believe our Taberner House development in Croydon, which is informed by the needs of the local community and draws on the latest sustainable design and construction techniques, is going to be a great example of what can be achieved.”
The site was home to council headquarters Taberner House from 1967 until 2013, when employees moved into the adjacent Bernard Weatherill House and the site was earmarked for regeneration. Taberner House was demolished in 2015 and plans for the new scheme were approved last May.