Alternative Housing

Putting the Social into Alternative Housing

On September 17-18, 2015 Melissa Fernandez and Kath Scanlon presented a paper and participated in the 2-day academic/practitioner workshop in the Geffrye Museum called ‘Putting the Social into Alternative Housing’, marking the end of Dr Michaela Benson’s ESRC project.

Islington Park Street community: a model for alternative housing in London

Dr. Melissa Fernández profiles Islington Park Street community, an alternative housing model in London, as a possible model for the effective and low cost reuse of obsolete owned sheltered housing and care homes. Some key findings include: Islington Park Street Community (IPS) is a long-established mixedneeds housing that provides a mutually supportive permanent home for people with mixed backgrounds, needs and abilities. IPS is financially and socially self-managed with a robust decisionmaking… Read More

In the news: councils looking to alternative housing as part of the solution to the supply crisis

LSE London’s knowledge exchange project, Housing in London: Addressing the Supply Crisis, was mentioned recently in The Guardian. The article by Alice Graham discusses why local authorities are considering alternative housing models as a way to ease the pressure of growing waiting lists and to accelerate the development of new supply.  It draws on lessons from a recent site visit which brought stakeholders to three alternative housing sites in south London and a local authority roundtable on… Read More

Towards a community of practice: notes from a London Local Authority roundtable

Alternative housing, be that utopian schemes like co-housing or technological fixes like off-site construction, increases the mix of options on offer in London’s constrained housing market. One key lesson that emerged from our site visit to three alternative housing schemes in Lewisham was the vital role an ‘enabling local authority’ might play in overcoming the barriers to alternative housing provision. An earlier multi-stakeholder workshop had also revealed a lack of knowledge or… Read More

Video: Lessons from a visit to three alternative housing sites in south London

On 4 February 2015, a group of researchers and stakeholders visited three alternative housing sites in Forest Hill in south London: Walters Way, a street of houses constructed using the Walter Segal self-build method; Featherstone Lodge, site of a future co-housing development; and Havelock Walk, a mews of live/work dwellings The site visit followed an earlier thematic workshop which explored how alternative housing can be part of the solution to London’s housing supply… Read More

Prefab is Back in Town

Site profile: Y:Cube. By Theadora Trindle and Benjamin Walch, LSE MSc Regional and Urban Planning Studies, 2014-15. London is in the throes of a housing supply crisis, we all know this by now. What is less known is how to address it in a way that produces new stock quickly, efficiently and of high quality. While often overlooked, there is a precedent in London’s history for doing this successfully: the use of… Read More

Learning from live/work

Site profile: Bow Arts Live/Work Units By Benjamin Walch and Rodrigo Peon-Veiga, LSE MSc Regional and Urban Planning Studies, 2014-15 Funding arts locally while providing artists with affordable living and working space can sound like a utopian vision. But in 2007, an encounter between the Bow Arts Trust and social landlord Poplar HARCA, who found themselves working together on another project, made this vision a reality in East London. LSE London went in… Read More

Development of new cohousing: lessons from a London scheme for the over-50s

LSE London’s Kath Scanlon and Melissa Fernandez have recently published an article on the lessons learned from a south London co-housing scheme, Featherstone, which they have been researching for 3 years. The article can be accessed here.

ESRC seminar series explores the lessons and potential of co-housing

LSE London together with Newcastle University, UK Cohousing Network, University of Leeds, Lancaster University, Nottingham University, and University of Sheffield were awarded an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) seminar series grant to hold 6 seminars on co-housing between 2014-2016.

Workshop: Increasing the range of alternative approaches to supply in London can significantly increase output

There is a palpable sense that alternative housing options (including self-build, co-housing, live-work, community land trusts and sustainable building technologies) are gaining momentum in London. Increased interest is evident at both policy and popular levels (see previous blog about this topic here). At the very least, there is increasing recognition that much of the supply being produced through the traditional housing market, although necessary, is not the ‘right’ kind of housing for many people…. Read More