WORK on a multi-million pound housing project in Pinner can finally begin after it was given the green light by Harrow Council last week.
Even though proposals for Mill Farm Estate received resounding support from residents in October last year the scheme needed final approval from the council's planning committee on Thursday (March 11).
Catalyst Communities Housing Association (CCHA) are now able to begin the redevelopment of the estate – replacing the existing buildings to provide modern homes and new houses for rent and sale.
The £23 million scheme will involve the building of as many as 193 new homes some with gardens, sheds and balconies as well a communal children's play area.
It will be redeveloped into a mini-village of modern, energy-efficient homes to provide social housing for families as well as low cost and market homes for sale.
Rather than the current bed-sits and small flats, the close is going to be totally renovated to provide a bigger mix of flats and houses with up to five-bedrooms.
The new homes will be energy-efficient with thick insulation, double glazed windows and solar-powered hot water systems.
The new plans aim to create more of a community feel and the designs have been created to help cut out crime and reduce the risk of burglaries and anti-social behaviour.
Catalyst Communities Housing Association, who will take over the estate from the council, have also made promises to provide various community initiatives such as training and employment schemes.
Councillor Barry Macleod-Cullinane, portfolio holder for housing, has backed the decision to have over the responsibility to CCHA, which was supported by 90 per cent of tenants.
He said: "This transfer is a very positive move and we are happy with the result, which means we can renovate an entire estate and improve the lives of tenants.
"We are always looking to improve our housing stock, but the unfair reality is that £7m a year of rent is being taken by the government and given to other parts of the country to improve their housing stock.
“In this current climate, the transfer to Catalyst Communities Housing Association is the best way forward for the tenants of Mill Farm."