First family focused rental scheme wins Sunday Times ‘housing project’ award

Essential Living and Assael Architecture have won Sunday Times housing project award for Creekside Wharf in Greenwich.

The award was searching for the most impressive schemes with planning permission, less than 6 months into development and relied entirely on CGI’s.

The 249-apartment scheme will encompass London’s first family focused block specifically for long term rent. The development’s two buildings with 189 and 60 units respectively will prioritise locals and encourage residents to socialise together in a top floor entertainment deck and in a coffee-house style lobby.

Developers Essential Living, who will also manage the apartments themselves, approached local group, Greenwichmums, to participate in focus groups to ensure local families needs are fully considered.

The scheme, designed by Assael Architecture has been designed with families in mind – offering smart storage and social areas for kids and families to play safely.

The family focused design initiatives included wider communal corridors for pushchairs, buggy storage, extra acoustic insulation and where possible, children’s bedrooms positioned away from living rooms to increase ease for ‘early bed times’.

The planning board had said it was “refreshing to see a developer think out of the box” while the chair of committee praised it for being “unique”, adding that the approach to working with community groups “sent a message to other developers”.

Martin Bellinger, chief operating officer at Essential Living said:

“This award is great recognition for an emerging part of the housing market and of the fantastic team we’ve assembled to redefine standards for Britain’s renters.”

Russell Pedley, director at Assael Architecture said:

“The ethos behind the scheme is that customers rent the entire building, rather than just an apartment, so amenity space plays an integral role in the design. It’s designed to create a lifestyle and strong sense of community through each building, providing residents with an attractive and robust environment where they’ll want to stay long-term.”