Scheme Summary

The scheme consists of 24 bungalows for the elderly, constructed on the site of a former tower block. Completed and occupied since 1998, it achieved NHER 10, the Environmental Standard Award, Lifetime Homes Standard and Secured by Design.

Scheme Details

As part of Liverpool HAT's programme for refurbishment and renewal of high rise blocks across Liverpool, the future of Joseph Morgan Heights needed to be determined. A condition survey of the block showed it to be more cost effective to redevelop the site than refurbish. As a result, 24 energy efficient, timber framed, environment friendly bungalows were built.

Environmental Features

The bungalows were constructed in accordance with BRE's Environmental Standard Award (now EcoHomes) and achieved the following credits:

Mandatory credits

Optional credits

Global issues and use of resources:

maximum CO2 emissions:

less than 50m2: 31kg/m2/yr
50-100m2: 30kg/m2/yr
more than 100m2: 29kg/m2/yr

all insulation materials with an ozone depletion potential of 0.10 or less

all solid timber from well-managed regulated sources or suitable reused timber all timber panel products from well managed regulated sources or suitable reused timber

storage containers for recyclable household waste.

Indoor issues:

formaldehyde emissions minimised, timber treated only where necessary and always treated industrially prior to use; no asbestos and no added lead in paint.

Global issues and use of resources:

maximum CO2 emissions:

less than 50m2: 21kg/m2/yr
50-100m2: 19kg/m2/yr
more than 100m2: 17kg/m2/yr

low energy lighting

provision of gas cooking point

timber frame construction

Local issues:

ecological damage to site minimised

reuse of existing site

ecological value of site enhanced

WCs with purpose-designed maximum 6 litre flush

rainwater butt

Indoor issues:

thermal insulation protected in lofts

provision of house log book

BS8206: Part 2 Daylight criteria met in kitchen and living rooms.

An I beam and panel system was used for the timber frame. The panels are fully filled with blown cellulose (recycled newspaper) for insulation and airtightness. Together with low emissivity double glazed timber frame windows, the bungalows achieved maximum energy ratings.

Simple water conservation features included 6 litre WCs, spray taps and showers over baths (where considered appropriate by an Occupational Therapist). These were coupled with Water Dynamics Well Butt greywater recycling system. The scheme also includes the provision of rainwater butts and compost makers.

Organic external and internal paint finishes were used throughout for a healthier environment.

Process and Monitoring

Liverpool HAT funded the redevelopment directly. It does not use Housing Corporation finance. This level of autonomy enables it to set its own scheme development standards that demand a high environmental performance. All refurbishment schemes have to achieve NHER 8 with new buildings achieving 9 and all buildings have to achieve the BRE's Environmental Standard Award (now EcoHomes).

Resident participation was an important element to the process to ensure housing meets needs more effectively.

Monitoring of the bungalows was carried out for 24 months between May 1998 and May 1999. The gas, electricity and water readings were compared against a standard new build scheme of bungalows with NHER 9.1 compared to Greenhaven Close's rating of 10.

The cost savings of bills are on average 1 a week; with a gas saving of 37 and a water saving of 16 per annum. Electricity savings were lower than expected. It is likely that this is due to a higher use of electric cookers and more white goods at Greenhaven Close. The scheme achieves an additional reduction in CO2 emissions of 9.01% from the control development. Resident satisfaction of heating systems, controls and costs is also much more favourable at Greenhaven Close.

The greywater recycling system was also monitored for 24 months. Generally residents are pleased with the system, although additional savings are small. This is partly due to other water saving features reducing overall water consumption, and partly due to low usage by the small and elderly households.


The overall scheme cost 776,000, with an average unit cost of 64,682. When compared with a recent brick and block scheme the units cost 15.7% more as a result of the environmental features.

Developer's Comments

This has become one of the HAT's most prestigious schemes and more importantly has been a tremendous success in the eyes of the residents. The Liverpool Housing Action Trust is a non-departmental public body established in 1992. It has a 13 year programme to secure the redevelopment or refurbishment of 67 tower blocks in Liverpool, which were transferred to the HAT in October 1993.

Contact: Roger Howes,
Quality Standards Manager,
Liverpool Housing Action Trust,
4th Floor,
Cunard Building,
Water Street,
Liverpool L3 1EG
Tel: 0151 224 6973