Environment and community
Cross Street South was successful because Wolverhampton City Council had clear aspirations for the scheme from the start. Their brief aimed “to create sustainable developments where communities can live in high quality homes, in a safe and pleasant environment, where residents can enjoy an improved quality of life and economic opportunity”.
Cross Street South comprises 27 two bedroom flats and 3 four bedroom houses, all affordable and responding to local need as defined by the local authority and Housing Corporation. Sustainability and social inclusion are addressed by good range of community facilities and public transport in walking distance.
The brief specified low energy housing and contained considerable detail on how to achieve this. Cross Street South considers sustainability from many angles:
- superior airtightness
- natural lighting and ventilation
- a biomass boiler
- use of low-embodied energy materials
- green roofs
- low-energy lighting
- passive solar gain
- sun tubes
- an eco park.
The biomass boiler uses wood chips, a waste product from the timber industry. The insulation is a paper-based product. This sustainable approach extended to the kitchen units, sourced from a local supplier with recycled materials in their construction. As a result, heating and hot water costs are 70% lower than in similar, conventional accommodation.