There may be hope for the UK’s housing crisis yet, as Worcester City Council approved the country’s first iKozie micro-home community.
Plans to build 16 single-person iKozie homes on a former brownfield site in the city centre have been approved by Councillors, which could become the template for similar housing solutions moving forward.
Construction will begin in 2019 and the scheme will contain a mix of five affordable homes, which will be allocated to individuals put forward from Worcester City Council’s housing list, with the remainder becoming privately rented homes.
Designed by iKozie Director Kieran O’Donnell and Andrew Eastabrook of Eastabrook Architects, the buildings deliver stylish and desirable homes for one in just 17.25 square metres, all featuring a bedroom, shower room, living area and full kitchen including appliances. Two of the designs are disabled friendly, while a proportion will be double stacked.
iKozie Limited submitted plans for the site, near Cecil Road, at the start of the year in collaboration with Worcestershire-based Planning Prospects Ltd, who have played an instrumental role in getting the development through the process and approved, following consultation with the City Council and residents.
O’Donnell said: “This is a historic day for the city of Worcester. The approval of the first iKozie community will draw a lot of attention from around the country and Worcester City Council is to be congratulated for its vision in supporting this innovative housing scheme.
“It hasn’t been an easy road to get here as we have revised the plans to ensure the council’s view and the thoughts and concerns of residents near the development have been taken into consideration.
“We also acknowledge the work of Councillor Jabba Riaz for playing a key role in organising productive consultations with residents before he became Mayor of Worcester.
“Now that the plans have been approved, we will begin the process of preparing the site. We expect the major work groundwork to begin in spring 2019 and the first residents to be in by this time next year.”
Councillor James Stanley, Chair of the City Council’s Communities Committee, commented: “We are proud to support this application for more iKozie homes in Worcester.
“This is a much-needed and innovative housing solution, which will help more people in the city to live independently while also benefitting from being part of a wider community.”
The iKozie first captured the world’s attention when unveiled by The Homeless Foundation in October 2017, of which O’Donnell is also a trustee.