Tolent worked in partnership with South Tyneside Housing Ventures Trust, South Tyneside Homes and Homes England to deliver Whitburn Towers which provides 36 high-quality apartments for the over 55s in surroundings that promote a sense of community.
The development consists of a modern mix of one and two-bedroom apartments to provide independent living to the over 55s within the local area; replacing a sheltered accommodation facility which was demolished in 2017.
Whitburn Towers brought to life the client’s vision of an inclusive development that fits with the current and changing needs of people aged over 55.
Their primary concern was to deliver homes which meet specific needs, and actions around helping people aged over 55 maintain their independence. All of the apartments were fully wheelchair accessible and adaptable, with wheelchair circulation space and accessible bathrooms.
The spacious apartments featured balconies which provide views of the coast and South Tyneside. As well as the apartments, the development includes a communal lounge for residents and wheelchair charging rooms.
The development also included courtyards and green spaces with landscaping and communal gardens with seating and planting for residents to socialise and spend time.
During the tender period, Tolent undertook an extensive value engineering exercise proposing several recommendations to the client to save money and add value to the scheme. The client agreed and implemented Tolent’s suggestions into the project’s design, achieving £105,900 worth of savings as well as future-proofed designs.
The design changes we suggested not only saved the client money but supported buildability. For example, one of our suggestions was to change the design of the balconies, remove excessive columns by building the balconies directly into pad stones, which removed c. 0% of steel which in turn supported myriad buildability issues.
The design changes also ensured future adaptability of the apartments, which was important given the changing needs of the over 55 future residents. For example, changes to the design of the bathrooms were future-proofed to support future adaptability and maintenance costs over the lifetime of the scheme.
The project was on time, on budget and importantly our development relationship with Tolent has been excellent, with good communication and cooperation throughout. We have endeavoured to incorporate suggestions from all interested parties to provide accommodation of the highest order.
Chair of South Tyneside Housing Ventures Trust
I would like to thank you and the Tolent team for the excellent work carried out on the Whitburn Towers project. The working relationship between us has been excellent throughout the duration of the project and together we overcame many hurdles.
The scheme has been finished to an extremely high standard and gratitude must also be given to your subcontractors. Any constructive criticism that was given from our team was took on board and put into practice very swiftly which was great to witness. The site team were brilliant and it was evident how much they cared and drove the works on
Project Delivery Manager, South Tyneside Homes