Landmark in construction of Exeter’s pioneering Extra Care scheme

Devon County Councillor James McInnes and colleague on the roof of the new extra care housing schemeDevon County Councillor James McInnes and colleague on the roof of the new extra care housing scheme

Posted on: 4 March 2020

Councillors have celebrated the progress in constructing the UK’s first super energy efficient Extra Care scheme, which is on schedule to open in Exeter later this year.

The main structure is now complete for the development off Topsham Road, which will be the first Passivhaus standard Extra Care facility in the country.

Councillors toured the building while attending a ‘topping out’ ceremony, which traditionally marks the high point of the building being reached during construction.

The Extra Care home will have 53 apartments carefully designed to meet the needs of elderly residents and those requiring dementia care.

The self-contained apartments will have on-site care and support for those aged over 55, with care needs.

Council Leader Phil Bialyk said:

“We’ve reached a key milestone in the construction of this amazing building and I couldn’t be more pleased.

“Exeter is committed to becoming a Net Zero Carbon city by 2030, and the Council is leading by example, constructing both new council housing and other developments to super energy efficient standards.

“That is important in lifting people out of fuel poverty, and it’s also important in reducing carbon emissions as we work towards our ambitious target of becoming a Net Zero carbon city by 2030.”

Extra Care housing is also a central plank in Devon County Council’s social care strategy for supporting older and vulnerable adults, as increasingly more people are receiving health and social care in their own homes.

Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for adult care and health, said:

“We would all rather be able to stay living in our own homes as our health deteriorates. Extra care housing like this, alongside personal care delivered in the community, is giving people that opportunity to receive the care they need while remaining as independent as possible in their own home.

“This is the first Extra Care scheme for us in the city, but follows great success in towns including Totnes, Newton Abbot, Okehampton, Ivybridge and Bideford.”

Across the five-storey building there will also be lounges, dining rooms, hobby spaces including a library, as well as a salon and spa treatment room. Surrounding the building will be landscaped gardens.

Cllr Laura Wright, Lead Councillor for Council Housing Development & Services, said:

“I am absolutely delighted to see the progress of this excellent project, which will help to meet the identified need for extra care accommodation in Exeter.

“It is a fantastic building, constructed to the very highest standards, which will support elderly residents with care needs in our city.”

The care and support is provided by professional care staff regulated by the Care Quality Commission. All services are flexible and can be increased or decreased as required.

The City Council is working in partnership with Devon County Council and a selected housing care provider to ensure the socially rented extra care accommodation provides a secure and comfortable home for its residents.

The County Council and City Council will be able to refer applicants for the offer of a tenancy when they become available, to ensure that this much needed facility in the city is available for local residents with an extra care need.

The internal environment will provide unique heat, air and water features for optimum comfort as well as being energy efficient.

The building design is a key part of Exeter’s aim of becoming a Net Zero Carbon city by 2030.

Utilising key weather data up to 2080 from the University of Exeter, the building has been designed to adapt to changing weather climates – from rising temperatures to storms.

Work started on the development, which will be known as Edwards Court, at the end of 2018, and is expected to be ready for occupation in December.
Doug Lloyd, operations director at Kier Regional Building Western & Wales, said: “We are extremely proud to be working with Exeter City Council to build the UK’s first Passivhaus standard care home.

“Topping out of the main structure is an important milestone for the Extra Care Scheme that is set to provide comfortable living space with low energy costs for its residents when it opens and provide longevity as the building will adapt to predicted weather conditions.

“Working with our local supply chain, we will spend the coming months completing the building ready for opening in autumn. During this time, we will continue to engage with the local community and showcase all that this building will have to offer residents of Exeter for years to come.”

2 comments on “Landmark in construction of Exeter’s pioneering Extra Care scheme

  1. Sheila Robinson says:

    very encouraging (former sheltered housing manager)

  2. Richard Hosking says:

    An essential element of Devon’s housing strategy approved by Cabinet yesterday.
    We also plan more social and key workers’ housing.

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