Largest Passivhaus affordable housing scheme in the north west nears completion

Construction of the largest Passivhaus affordable housing scheme in the north west is nearing completion.

The finishing touches are now being made at Greenhaus – a highly sustainable development of 96 homes, which is being built on Chapel Street in Salford, opposite Salford Cathedral.

The first residents are expected to start moving into Greenhaus this spring.

The ground-breaking development is being delivered by The English Cities Fund (ECF) – a joint venture between nationwide placemaker, Muse, Legal & General and Homes England – alongside Salford housing association Salix Homes, and supported by Salford City Council.

This week, delegates from the Northern Housing Consortium (NHC) paid a visit to Greenhaus, including leaders from housing associations across the north, to find out more about how sustainable and affordable homes can be delivered on a large scale.

NHC Chief Executive Tracy Harrison said:

“This is a fantastic example of green homes delivering real change in the north. Projects like this cut carbon, deliver lower bills and warmer, healthier homes, as well as creating good green jobs. This benefits residents, the economy, and the environment. We need an ambitious programme of investment from the government to build on this progress.”

The nine-storey development has been built to Passivhaus Classic certified standard, which is the leading low-energy design standard. Passivhaus homes offer high thermal comfort and improved air quality, providing a healthier living environment and homes that are cheaper to heat and run.

The sustainable features at Greenhaus include triple glazed windows, the latest insulation technology, improved ventilation and airtightness, air source heat pumps and publicly accessible electric vehicle charging points.

The one and two-bedroom homes will be available in a mix of tenures including social rent, affordable rent and rent-to-buy.

Sue Sutton, Chief Executive at Salix Homes, said:

“Greenhaus is the first and largest development of its kind in the region, setting the benchmark for new-build, affordable and sustainable homes that are fit-for-the-future and support our carbon neutral ambitions. We were pleased to welcome NHC members to see the development as it nears completion and share with them our experience of how truly sustainable and affordable homes can be built at scale to help tackle the housing crisis – delivering high quality, healthier homes that are better for residents and the environment.”

Passivhaus homes offer a range of health benefits for residents. The airtightness, thermal comfort and improved ventilation help protect against airborne pollutants, reduce the risk of illness associated with living in cold homes, and minimise the risk of damp, mould and condensation.

Simon Hourihan, Project Director at Muse, said:

“Greenhaus is a true partnership project, setting the standard for affordable, sustainable housing in the region. We’re extremely proud of the whole team, who have been learning together and overcoming challenges to deliver high quality, Passivhaus-certified homes on a large scale. We’re looking forward to completing and residents moving in later this year, and learning more about the positive impact that low-energy homes can have on people’s lives.”

Greenhaus is part of ECF’s £1bn, 50-acre Salford Central transformation being delivered in partnership with Salford City Council, and will take the overall percentage of affordable homes delivered by ECF to 25% across the Chapel Street area of the masterplan.

The homes are being built by lead contractor Eric Wright Construction and were designed by architect Buttress.

Andy Avery, Director at Buttress added:

“This milestone is a testament to the team’s vision and skill in designing and delivering innovative and sustainable housing solutions. Buttress’ commitment to Passivhaus design illustrates our dedication to environmental responsibility, creating aesthetically pleasing yet, healthier and affordable places to live for the people of Salford.”

Salix Homes secured funding from NatWest, along with grants from Homes England and Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) to help fund the multi-million-pound scheme.