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Remaining Houses at Railway Court Handed Over

The remaining houses at Railway Court on Belfast’s York Road have recently been handed over. The 98-unit project includes 50 townhouses, 35 apartments, 12 semi-detached, one detached house.

 

Desie Wilson from Wilson Construction said,

“From when we initially visited the site we could see the potential to completely regenerate an area which had become neglected. We knew from the start that rather than simply commission an Architect to work on a standard housing scheme we needed to focus on developing a project ethos that would allow us to create an environment which the local community would be proud of. Central to this was to create a development with a community atmosphere. We put a lot of pre-construction time into designing the layout to do just that. We also focused a lot of effort on ensuring the properties would be cost effective to operate, yet be as thermally efficient as possible. Overall we are delighted with the end product.”

 

Background on Project:
Rows of late 19th century / early 20th century houses were originally on the four acre site. These houses were demolished to make way for the new development. We made the following design modifications to the initial proposed scheme for the Brownfield site:

  • Planning permission was changed to alter the brick style to create a more traditional façade to better compliment the area.
  • The proposed build type was changed from primarily traditional cavity wall construction to timber frame construction, as it was recognised as a quicker build method that also provides a better thermal performance (better U-Value).

 

Layout:

The following features from the original site have been retained to help create the community atmosphere which is present on the development today:

  • The original layout from over 100 years ago.
  • The three separate vehicular access points on to York Road.
  • The existing street names.

 

Features of the Project:

  • Due to the ground conditions, the site had to be piled using a Bored Piling system and a cast in-situ concrete system. This investment in superior sub-structure technology has ensured the superstructure of each property is as structurally sound as possible.
  • There are multiple residents whose previous generations lived on the site; one resident is now a third generation property owner on the site.
  • Density was reduced to help ensure as much open space as possible and to meet modern standards.

 

Summary:

From the initial groundworks to the handover of the properties, the project has proven to be a success and has enhanced an area which was derelict and in need of redevelopment and residential therapy. The development now offers a range of 98 homes, incorporating modern townhouses, stylish semi-detached homes and spacious apartments, all set in a well planned layout.

 

The project was a Finalist in the CEF/Specify Construction Excellence Awards 2012.