Retrofits Save Derelict Homes

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Tuesday, July 30th, 2013
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Green building makeovers have transformed a cluster of derelict properties originally slated for demolition into modern, eco-friendly homes.

Located on Liverpool’s Boots Estate in the United Kingdom, the 74 properties had been consigned to demolition as far back as 2000 on the grounds of structural defects.

This, however, was delayed, and the properties were acquired by in 2008 by a tenant-led housing association known as Liverpool Mutual Homes (LMH), which became responsible for a total of 15,000 homes originally owned by Liverpool City Council.

Having initially wrapped special cladding around the homes in order to address the structural issues, LMH embarked upon a range of retrofits which are expected to improve efficiency and performance, slash utility costs for tenants and reduce carbon emissions by a total of around 3,000 tonnes.

Key new features of the homes include solar rooftop panels, A-rated double-glazed windows and doors, energy efficient LED lights and ventilation heat recovery systems, new roofs with improved installation, top-specification central heating systems and new dual-flush cisterns and efficient taps to reduce water consumption.

Also, thanks to the remodelling of home interiors according to open plan designs and new landscaped gardens equipped with fresh walls and fences, the appearance and aesthetic character of the properties has been greatly improved.

LMH chief executive Steve Coffey says the makeovers have transformed once dilapidated, structurally unsound houses into modern dwellings which exceed efficiency requirements for new homes.

“The homes have been completely modernised for the 21st century, with open-plan living designs and a wide range of energy efficient products that will save people a significant amount of money in fuel bills,” he says.

The £4 million development was financed by LMH, Liverpool City Council and the Community Energy Saving Program.

The success of the retrofits is believed to have been a key factor in LMH being named Environmental Business of the Year at the ECHO Environment Awards and bodes well for broader efforts to renew and upgrade Liverpool’s residential housing.

“Housing regeneration continues to gather pace in Norris Green, and the completion of this fantastic scheme is another important piece in the jigsaw,” said Councillor Ann O’Byrne, Cabinet Member for Housing with the Liverpool City Council.

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