Housebuilding was once again the focus of attention in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and Spending Review, emphasising the need to prioritise the provision of affordable housing. In previous Statements announcing measures for housebuilding, the industry has responded with skepticism. Yet it seems the majority of the sector is at last satisfied with the new housing programme unveiled last month.
Whilst a blueprint for 400,000 homes has been unveiled, there is no doubt the test will be on the execution of delivery and standard of these new homes. RIBA President Jane Duncan praised the announcement, yet appealed for a high standard of homes: “The Chancellor’s focus on housebuilding is welcome. But urgent action is needed to ensure all homes are well-designed, sustainable places people want to live, making ‘rabbit hutch’ houses a thing of the past.”
As we look toward the arrival of these new homes, newly completed housing schemes are helping to set the benchmark for design, sustainability and affordability. On page 13, FC&A profiles a stunning example of a residential development committed to improving the residents’ quality of life through passivhaus design.
In this bumper edition, FC&A also pays tribute to a whole host of suppliers continuing to stay active within the sector. ‘Year at a Glance’ captures the highlights from 2015 including product launches, case studies and awards. With entries from the likes of Knauf AMF, Smart Systems, Armstrong Ceilings and Aurubis, this focus, starting from page 66, is the ideal resource to recap on these essential building solutions.
Elsewhere in this issue, you will find dedicated features on HVAC, Roofing & Cladding, Timber and Landscaping, plus an in-depth technical focus on sealing External Wall Insulation efficiently.
I hope you enjoy this edition. Don’t forget you can also access all of the magazine’s features, product news and supplier information at your fingertips via Future Constructor & Architect’s state-of-the-art app. In the meantime, on behalf of the FC&A team, I would like to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.