Crystal Palace CLT is made up of local people who aim to acquire land to provide affordable homes, workspace and other community assets in consultation with local residents.
Following Croydon Council’s release of a small site for community led housing, the Crystal Palace Transition Town Community came together to establish a Community Land Trust (CLT). The Transition Town network is a movement addressing community issues and promoting sustainable ways of living.
They were selected preferred bidders for The Lawns site in Upper Norwood with an environmental scheme at discounted market sale and community gardens. The journey has been complicated due to challenges faced by Croydon Council stalling progress, but after 4 years of hard work from volunteers, supported by CLH London advisers, the planning proposal for their first development at The Lawns has gone live.
The Community Land Trust volunteers worked closely with the community, and their architects, Archio, to develop a design listening to feedback. They came up with proposals which include 7 homes on a site that the council’s arms-length developer had considered too difficult.
The project also improves the turning head at the end of the road with 7 car parking spaces, and a landscaped green area which promotes biodiversity and community gardening.
The CLT plans to offer these homes at below 70% of market value, as they are a non-profit organisation, and any surplus from the community land trust project will go towards discounted sales prices and other community projects.
The Trust is also committed to combining sustainability and affordability. The new homes will be built to high environmental standards to reduce the impact on the planet, making them easier to heat in winter and to keep cool in summer, thereby helping to reduce energy bills for residents.
How we’re helping
We supported initial incorporation and provided funding to review the viability and legal structure of the project. We have helped with getting architects and project managers on board and advised on community engagement. After working with the council’s development managers for a period, we helped the group recruit their own development manager. Our advisers have provided ongoing mentoring in shaping the development and agreeing a land transaction and development agreement.