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Two family homes built in a day - a UK first

Housing and planning minister Brandon Lewis recently witnessed a UK first of two homes constructed in one day while on a visit to Walsall.Mr Lewis visited three new developments in the area to find out how affordable housing providers are using modern construction methods to cope with rising demand for new homes.Housing developer Accord Group built the two properties as part of a new £5 million scheme that will eventually provide 50 residential properties.The housing and planning minister visited LoCal Homes in Stephenson Avenue, Beechdale, where he was given a tour of the firm's low carbon timber framed homes factory, which designs and manufactures properties.He also went to Walsall Housing Group's development on Barracks Lane, Well Place and Thames Road in Blakenall. Completed in March 2014, the site consists of 73 new homes constructed at a cost of over £7 million.Finally, the minister was given a tour of the Mar City development, where he witnessed the modular technology and construction recently undertaken at Norfolk Place and was given a demonstration of how modular housing units are positioned.Councillor Adrian Andrew, deputy leader and portfolio holder for regeneration and transport at Walsall Council, said: "Mr Lewis is interested in how we're filling the demand for affordable homes for families in Walsall."Our housing partners have come up with a number of innovative ways to respond to this need and the council has been working and investing with partners to achieve this success.Mr Andrew added that the affordable homes projects have created construction apprenticeships as well as satisfying housing demandWhen the new housing and planning minister took over the role in July, he claimed the government's reforms had put an end to 'Nimbyism' and attracted more support for construction projects.Mr Lewis said ending the top-down system of the previous administration and devolving power to local communities had changed people's opinions on new homes, citing evidence from the British Social Attitudes survey showing support for such schemes rose from 28 per cent in 2010 to 47 per cent in 2013. 

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