A consortium of North West housing associations and local authorities has launched a £560 million framework to build 4,000 new homes.
JV North, whose members collectively manage over 125,000 homes, has invited a wide range of contractors and consultants to bid for places on its four-year framework, which it has been developing since the second half of last year.
The consortium’s members include Bury Council, Torus, Peaks and Plains Housing Trust, Stockport Homes, and Weaver Vale Housing Trust.
Wayne Gales, JV North chair and chief executive at Weaver Vale Housing Trust, said: “It is vital we take a new approach to how we procure contractors and consultants. They are central to our homebuilding plans yet are and will be facing great pressure as a consequence of COVID-19. Our vision is to create genuine partnerships with them.
“We are not focusing purely on narrow economics; we are also looking at the added value provided that will help us deliver a connected masterplan to address housing, health and unemployment to reap build back fairer benefits. More than ever before in our lifetime, the coming post-COVID-19 years will need us to focus on investing in people too, not just buildings.”
The consortium has invited large and regional SME contractors to bid for construction lots, along with a wide range of consultants.
Contractors have been invited to apply to join any two of the framework’s three construction bands valued at £1 to £4 million, £4 to 10 million, and £10 million and over.
To increase opportunities for SME contractors, schemes up to £2 million in value will be made available on JV North’s Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS).
JV North is also using its DPS to seek contractors to deliver offsite projects using modern methods of construction (MMC). These projects will be unlimited in contract value.
The new framework also sees JV North seeking to increase its use of consultants, withh professionals such as architects, principal designers, engineers, and planning consultants all being sought to take part in the framework.
Sean Stafford, director of Saffer Cooper which manages JV North’s development and framework programme, said: “Our previous three frameworks have seen excellent work carried out, helping members build the equivalent of three-and-a-half homes every working day.
“JV North is adopting the ‘building back fairer’ principle to this framework and all work it undertakes to help create more rounded communities. As such, we have made significant changes to ensure our actions match our words.
“Framework partners will be asked to help members address inequalities, poor health and unemployment by delivering social value in the schemes they are appointed to.
“As well as larger businesses, SMEs can apply for works in a simple manner via the DPS so JV North can further increase the investment it makes in local economies and communities.”
JV North will meet with interested contractors and consultants on 19 April ahead of the submission deadline of 11 May.
The consortium will announce the places it has awarded on its framework this June with call offs due to start in July.
Image: JV North chair Wayne Gales (left) with Sean Stafford of Saffer Cooper (right). Credit: JV North.