Update on Proposed Redevelopment of Montreal Square, 7 October 2019

As many are aware, CHS plans to redevelop Montreal Square in Cambridge.  At the residents’ request, we are now also reviewing options for a viable partial redevelopment which could include

  • houses at social rent for existing tenants
  • further houses and flats at affordable rent
  • a few new affordable homes for shared ownership sale.

What are the main reasons for the redevelopment?

  1. Our original aim was to replace the current 18 homes with twice that number of new, modern, spacious, energy efficient affordable homes.  This would enable all the current residents to return to new homes in Montreal Square and provide new affordable homes for people on the Council’s housing needs register. 
  2. As a charity, CHS has a duty and desire to provide as much affordable housing in Cambridge as we can.
  3. There is a desperate need for more affordable homes in Cambridge, particularly for people on lower incomes.
  4. It’s currently almost impossible for CHS to build affordable housing in Cambridge, where need and lack of affordability is greatest.

CHS intentions

  • CHS intends to provide only affordable new homes on the site.  
  • For existing residents, the new homes will be larger, better quality, more energy efficient and cheaper to run than the current homes.  In addition, they will be at the same social rent, with normal increases in line with inflation. 
  • The additional new homes will be at affordable rents (around 60% of open market rent).
  • CHS is NOT intending to build any market sale homes on this site.  If we can get enough grant from Homes England, we would prefer to build all the new homes for social rent too.

What does the redevelopment mean for current residents?

  • The residents occupying the current houses will all be temporarily relocated within Cambridge during the redevelopment, and their temporary accommodation will take into account residents’ needs and circumstances.
  • As well as providing practical help, CHS will cover the cost of moving (to temporary accommodation and back again, or for a single permanent move).
  • Any rent increase for the temporary accommodation will be funded by CHS.
  • Each Montreal Square resident will be entitled to a statutory Home Loss Payment, which is set by government. Currently this is £6,400 per tenancy (in addition to any expenses).
  • Once the redevelopment is complete, all residents will be able to return to Montreal Square
  • All residents choosing to return to Montreal Square will be able to be involved in the specification and design of their new home in whatever way possible.
  • The new proposed homes will be around 15% larger than the current houses and considerably more energy efficient, meaning the cost of living for current residents will be reduced.
  • CHS actively wants current tenants to return to Montreal Square, hence the package we are offering.

For further information please see below documents

Questions and Answers Updated 7th October 2019

Concerns and Mitigations Updated 7th October 2019

Housing Data 7th October 2019

Support Package Updated 7th October 2019