Seven Acres at Great Kneighton in Cambridge is one of only five UK developments to be commended by Building for Life for meeting the government’s industry standard for well-designed homes and neighbourhoods.
On Wednesday, 6 February, Planning Minister Nick Boles MP officially recognised five of the first developments that meet the revised Building for Life 12 criteria for design quality, safety and community.
As one of the first five developments to be recognised in this way, Seven Acres has been established as a benchmark for successful developments, supporting Skanska’s credentials in the UK residential market.
BfL12 is designed to help local communities become more involved in design conversations and in shaping development proposals. Its 12 questions provide a structure for discussions between local communities, the local planning authority, the developer and other stakeholders, to ensure that the design of new homes and their neighbourhood are as attractive, functional and sustainable as possible.
The five schemes recognised meet all 12 of the criteria set out by Building for Life. All illustrate a balance between buildings, landscape and spaces for people to interact as part of a community.
Skanska received a certificate of commendation from the Planning Minister. He said: "We need to build beautiful houses that people are happy to live next door to if we are to persuade local communities to accept enough house building to meet today's urgent need and that of future generations.
"Building for Life standards show the importance of good design both of buildings and of the public realm, and the benefits it can bring for both the building industry and communities. They are an incredibly useful guide for all involved in development.
"I'm delighted to commend the first five developments that meet the revised criteria for design and quality.”
Suzanne Aplin, sales and marketing director for Homes by Skanska, received the certificate, commenting: “Placemaking is an essential element of our developments, alongside sustainability and thoughtful design – we work hard to create places where people will want to live. This commendation is recognition of our success and the importance of setting a high standard for future house building in the UK.”
Stewart Baseley, Executive Chairman of the Home Builders Federation said: “Building for Life is an extremely useful tool. It is a unique collaboration that provides a comprehensive guide to all parties involved in housing design. Customer surveys clearly show that house builders are already delivering a high-quality product that people want to buy and live in. BFL gives us a standard to benchmark our homes against and will help us ensure we are doing all we can to deliver the best possible product for home buyers.”