St Christopher’s Square Bristol later living, South West England net zero Design
St Christopher’s Square Bristol net zero community
14 March 2022
St Christopher’s Square Bristol later living in South West England
FORE Partnership and Amicala submit plans for net zero extra care scheme in Bristol
14th of March 2022 – Designed by architects PRP, the scheme will be the first of a new generation of ultra-sustainable later living communities
Ethical investor FORE Partnership and integrated retirement community operator Amicala have submitted plans for an ultra-sustainable later living scheme in Bristol. Operated by Amicala and designed by PRP Architects, St Christopher’s Square will be one of the first net zero communities in the UK. The scheme sits on a five acre site in Westbury Park and will provide 122 homes for seniors as well as a range of community benefits.
FORE became a B Corporation in 2020, committing it to pursue purpose alongside profit, and has set an industry-leading target to achieve net zero carbon across its business and portfolio by 2025. St Christopher’s Square will be built to the highest levels of sustainability, designed using low carbon construction techniques and materials. In operation, the development will be net zero carbon and fossil fuel free, generating on-site solar energy through solar PVs and drawing energy from 100% renewable electricity. BREAAM Outstanding is being targeted as well as Platinum WELL and WiredScore ratings.
The plans have been submitted alongside development manager Socius, following extensive local community engagement and consultation. Proposals comprise the sustainable refurbishment of the existing heritage buildings on the site, including the Grade II listed Grace House, as well as a new collection of two storey cottages and four low-rise blocks.
Grace House is set to be transformed into a hub for the community, including a café, wellness centre, and activity rooms. The wellness facilities will include a hydrotherapy pool and gym. Additionally, North House will become an “urban village hall” open to local social enterprises, community groups, and schools.
The designs feature extensive open space, which will include a range of different types of gardens including sensory gardens and community food growing spaces designed to promote sustainable living and the wellbeing of residents. The landscaping has been designed by architects Stride Treglown, with the aim of generating a biodiversity net gain of at least 10%.
In keeping with its vision, FORE has put in place a detailed program to create positive social impact and deliver long-term benefits to the local community. It is believed that St Christopher’s Square is the first development in Bristol to actively align with the city’s new Social Value Policy and the Bristol One City Plan, incorporating the City Council’s TOMs Measurement Framework. Mayor Marvin Rees launched the Bristol One City Plan 2020 to set out Bristol’s 30-year vision. It is built on the themes of Connectivity, Health and Wellbeing, Homes and Communities, Economy, Environment, and Learning and Skills. The Plan outlines Bristol’s commitment to the UN SDGs, mapping them against their own goals for the future of Bristol.
St Christopher’s Square is expected to bring a package of socio-economic benefits to Bristol including 33 new full time jobs and jobs for disadvantaged groups. The development will deliver social and economic value of up to £36.3 million. In total, FORE will invest up to £85 million in the scheme.
Amicala is an operator of integrated retirement communities (also known as extra care) that support residents to age in place with a core focus on wellbeing and the provision of care and lifestyle services. The extra care model will help address the shortage of specialist accommodation for older people in Bristol, and free up local homes for families in the city. Extra care homes have been shown to reduce NHS costs by 38%, as well as reducing risk of falls for residents by 18%.
Basil Demeroutis, Managing Partner, FORE, said:
“We are committed to delivering projects that embody the highest standards of environmental sustainability, whilst driving significant positive social value. Through our drive to minimise whole of life carbon impact, including embodied and operational carbon, we aim to have a minimal environmental impact. As the first later living community in Bristol to achieve net zero, St Christopher’s Square will become an exemplar for a new generation of integrated retirement communities.”
Henry Lumby, Chief Development Officer, Amicala, said:
“By 2043, Bristol City Council predicts there will be a 40% increase in over 75s in the city, demonstrating the need for homes for seniors. St Christopher’s Square will provide the older population of Bristol with high quality and sustainable housing, with wraparound care on hand as needed. The wide range of facilities in North Lodge and the restored Grace House will create an engaging hub for our residents and the wider local community.”
Lucinda Mitchell, Project Director, Socius, said:
“Engaging with local residents on the plans for St Christopher’s has been a key part of our consultation. Having revised elements of the plans following local feedback, we are pleased to present a highly sustainable and inclusive scheme that will address the need for high quality specialist housing for Bristol. We look forward to continuing to engage with local organisations and use the site as a meanwhile use for the benefit of all.”
The St Christopher’s Square project is set to be the first in a new generation of ultra-sustainable, net zero extra care communities to be developed by FORE and Amicala. The partners are actively seeking further opportunities, aiming to assemble £300 million pipeline of projects to provide as many as 1,000 extra care homes. Target projects have a minimum potential of 100 homes and will be in strong regional centres like Bristol, Brighton, Birmingham, Cambridge, and within the M25.
‘EXTRA CARE’ also known as integrated retirement communities is a relatively new model of senior living in the UK that is very different to traditional retirement living or care homes. It is distinct from care homes in providing residents with independent living in their own homes or apartments, but with care and support available both within their own home and within the residents’ facilities. Compared to more traditional retirement communities, ‘extra care’ provides significantly more support and care for the residents, which can be increased or decreased depending on need as they age, ultimately providing full wrap-around care.
This allows residents to remain relatively independent and to age in place in the community, easing pressures on traditional care homes and the NHS, particularly by reducing both admissions and the length of hospital stays. As residents often move from family homes into extra care communities, typically from within a 5 to 10 mile radius, the project can also help strengthen the local housing market, by freeing up under-occupied large homes for up-sizers and in turn smaller homes for younger families or first-time buyers.
FORE PARTNERSHIP is a purpose-driven, transformational real estate investment firm active in the UK and western Europe. FORE’s holistic approach to carbon reduction, design, technology, and community, brings together environmental sustainability, social impact and an authentic appreciation of how people live, work, and interact, turning these into drivers of profitability for investors and tenants. The firm has a portfolio of over one million square feet spanning offices, mixed use, and residential sectors.
The FORE team has a successful €5 billion track record spanning three decades. FORE achieved B Corporation status in November 2020, a rigorous process requiring applicants to provide evidence of socially and environmentally responsible practices relating to energy, waste, and water use, worker compensation, diversity, and corporate transparency. B Corps legally embed their commitment to purpose alongside profit in their company articles. FORE is committed to becoming net zero by 2025, five years ahead of the wider industry target.
AMICALA is committed to the delivery of integrated retirement communities within a thoughtfully designed and sustainable environment that incorporate world leading practice. An Amicala community will be vibrant, offering an integrated approach to care and well-being through a range of services and amenities, that support the needs of residents as they change over time. CEO, Paul Spence, has spent the last seven years in senior living and has a long track record of managing businesses. CDO Henry Lumby, was formerly Head of Retirement Living at Savills and has a 20-year history in the industry. COO, Helen Jones, was Head of Operations for Domain Principal Group and has a 20-year history in the Australian care and senior living industry before transferring to the UK in 2017.
CFO, Michael Davies, has spent the last seven years in senior living and is a qualified Chartered Accountant with many years of experience of small and large companies alike. Amicala is owned by Seniors Living Group Ltd (SLG) and is a key part of the group’s focus on the senior living sector. Alongside Amicala, SLG owns Allegra Care, which is a central and southern England focused care and nursing home operations business that currently operates homes in North Somerset, Hampshire, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk.
SOCIUS is a privately-owned mixed-use developer focused on delivering long-term financial and social value for communities across the UK. Its current development pipeline includes Soapworks, a £175m regeneration in central Bristol which will include 140,000 sq ft of Grade A office, 243 new homes alongside leisure, retail and community uses. In addition, Socius is also leading on Edward Street Quarter, which comprises 170,000 sq ft of creative workspace and 168 homes in the heart of Brighton; Devonshire Gardens, a £155 million mixed-use neighbourhood in Cambridge city centre; and MK Gateway, a new mixed-use district in the centre of Milton Keynes.
St Christopher’s Square Bristol later living images / information from PRP Architects
Location: Bristol, south west England, United Kingdom
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