Guernsey Housing Association has purchased the former CI Tyres site for £1.7m.
The purchase is with the assistance of States funding from the capital grant awarded to the Affordable Housing Development Programme, and will use it to deliver desperately-needed key worker accommodation.
The development of key worker housing is an important focus of the affordable housing development programme. The Committee for Employment & Social Security and the Policy & Resources Committee both supported this site, which is in La Charroterie, being used specifically for key worker accommodation. The provision of suitable accommodation is much needed for the recruitment of these staff who are essential to help deliver the island’s health service.
It is anticipated that new homes for key workers can be developed at pace as the site already has planning permission to build 17 residential units. It is also ideally located due to its proximity to the hospital.
Some minor adjustments to the design are being considered to ensure the development best meets key worker housing requirements. This includes reconfiguring the design slightly to increase the number of units and replace the two retail units, which could result in 25 units being developed subject to the agreement of Planning Services.
It is currently anticipated that these apartments will be completed in Q2 2024.
Steve Williams, Chief Executive at GHA, said: “This was a fantastic opportunity to buy a site that is basically ready to go as a development project, given it already has planning permission for residential units.
“The island desperately needs all types of affordable housing, whether that’s social rental, partial ownership, specialised or key worker and this site is ideal for the latter. It is on a main bus route and within walking distance of the hospital, so it’s perfect for staff that the island’s health service relies on.”
Deputy Lindsay de Sausmarez, Vice-President of the Committee for Employment & Social Security, said: “Supporting the GHA’s desire to buy this site to develop into key worker accommodation was a no brainer. We know that there is a real shortage of suitable accommodation to house those staff brought to the island to support the island’s health service. This site ticks every box in terms of location, access to public transport and providing the opportunity to crack on with development as a result of the planning permission already in place.”