Lovell enters joint venture with Abri for £120m scheme

The proposed 500-home scheme on the outskirts of Weymouth, Dorset will include 45% affordable housing.
An artist's impression of the 500-home scheme in Weymouth, Dorset.
An artist’s impression of Abri and Lovell’s 500-home scheme in Weymouth, Dorset. Credit: Lovell

The Southern housing association Abri has reached an agreement with Lovell to build a new £120 million housing scheme.

Abri, which manages 35,000 homes in the South West and South East of England, has entered into a joint venture with Lovell Southern to build the 500-home scheme on the outskirts of Weymouth, Dorset.

The scheme will include 225 affordable homes, making 45% of the scheme affordable housing. Lovell, part of the Morgan Sindall Group, says the scheme will “transform” the area and provide “much-needed” affordable housing.

James Pennington, director of development at Abri, said: “We know that partnership working is essential if we are to deliver the homes people need.

“This joint venture with Lovell will provide people with a high quality, sustainable home and to be part of a community where everyone has the opportunity to belong, grow and thrive.”

The proposed new development will be built on a strategic development site as identified in Dorset Council’s Local Plan.

In addition to the 500 new homes, the site will create a whole new community featuring a new primary school, a care home, a local centre, and commercial and employment space. It will also feature large areas of public open space.

New footpaths and cycle paths will link the development to the national cycle network. Meanwhile the natural environment will be preserved and enhanced by protecting existing trees and headrows and creating new wildlife habitats.

Architects Boyle+Summers is leading on the master planning of the development including placemaking and the design of houses.

Andrew Johnston, regional manager director for Lovell Southern, said: “We believe this exciting development is a step closer to providing hundreds of quality new homes in this area with this joint venture with Abri.

“This is another major quality housing scheme for the region which, if granted planning, will bring quality, energy-efficient homes to the area whilst also driving job creation, apprenticeships and economic growth over the next ten years.

“The proposal is a dedicated program of investment, partnership working and housing delivery for the region.”

Richard Summers, director at Boyle+Summers, added: “The objective is to create a safe and walkable development, work with the site landscape features to create a strong sense of place and identity as well as character through ensuring a high quality development.”

Dorset Council has agreed outline planning permission for the scheme. Lovell is expected to submit a reserved matters planning application for the design and mix of the development later this year.

It is expected that Lovell will start on the main build by the end of 2021 if the scheme is granted full planning permission.

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