WORK costing £5m has begun on the redevelopment of a sheltered housing scheme in Fareham.
Fareham Borough Council has drafted in contractors Leadbitter to demolish and completely rebuild Collingwood House, a sheltered housing scheme at Stow Crescent.
The redevelopment was helped with an investment of £625,000 from the Homes and Communities Agency and is due to be completed by January 2015.
The new building will have 40 apartments, a mix of one and two-bed flats, for people over 55.
Member for health and housing, Cllr Brian Bayford said: ‘I’m looking forward to the redevelopment of Collingwood House and I’m glad work is now under way. There is a growing population of elderly people and this sheltered housing scheme will help meet their needs.
‘The redevelopment will make much better use of the site and will provide modern facilities for its tenants. I look forward to seeing the finished result in 2015.’
Area manager for the Homes and Communities Agency, Bruce Voss said: ‘We are pleased to be able to support Fareham Borough Council who have worked closely with residents to progress this important project, providing new affordable homes for the community.’
Dozens of people went to see Leadbitter’s plans for the site at an exhibition held at the Highlands Hub.
Leadbitter’s regional director Mikel Berrebi said: ‘As experienced constructors of assisted living housing for the elderly, we have seen the positive impact good quality accommodation can have on the lives of residents.
‘We look forward to working with the residents and community to create a development they can be proud of.’
The tenants living at Collingwood House have been involved throughout the redevelopment process and were moved out at the end of last year to alternative accommodation.
Once the redevelopment is complete, tenants will have the option of moving back.
Member of the tenants’ committee, Kenneth Atkins said: ‘The council have been very supportive and have kept us all well-informed and made us feel a part of the redevelopment.
‘I’m more than impressed with the plans for Collingwood House and look forward to it being built.’