Sustainable Homes in South London

A development of six ultra-sustainable and energy efficient homes in South London has been unveiled as the first project to be financed by Atelier’s Carbonlite Challenge, the pilot programme that uses the power of global capital to incentivise the UK’s property sector to build greener homes.

Launched in November by the development lender Atelier, with support from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the Carbonlite Challenge throws down a gauntlet to property developers – the greener your project, the cheaper your finance.

The development, which was designed by the award-winning architecture practice Craftworks and is being delivered by The Edition Group, combines a low-carbon, highly sustainable design with ultra-high energy efficiency – helping it meet the exacting standards of RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge.

Set amid mature trees at the edge of Dulwich Wood in South London, the six family homes will feature a cross-laminated timber structure, airtight construction technology and triple glazing. Modern methods of construction – in which much of the structure will be fabricated off-site – will keep waste to a minimum.

Most striking of all will be the homes’ ‘green roofs’ planted with meadow flowers and built-in bird and batboxes, which will support biodiversity and ensure all six 3,150ft2 houses blend harmoniously into their woodland surroundings.

The development’s use of sustainable materials, from Douglas Fir wood to handmade clay tiles, means it meets the Carbonlite Challenge’s strict green criteria – which range from the embedded carbon of the project to its calculated operational energy and potable water use.

The Carbonlite Challenge, which offers loans to qualifying residential developments in England, Scotland and Wales, rewards green developers with rebates that bring the net annual cost of their borrowing down as low as 4.99%.

In a deal brokered by SPF Private Clients, Atelier has provided £10m to finance the development of The Edition Group scheme in Dulwich. Upon successful completion of a post-construction Carbon and Sustainability assessment, the developers will receive a rebate of over £200,000.

Chris Gardner, co-founder of Atelier, commented: “The global net zero targets agreed at COP26 can seem distant and abstract. But building greener, lower carbon homes can make a difference today – and that’s what the Carbonlite Challenge is all about. We’re using the power of global capital to reduce the cost of development finance and change the way Britain builds homes for the better, and forever. The Edition Group’s scheme in Dulwich is a stellar example of the type of homes we want to help developers build. They’re beautiful to look at and will blend seamlessly into their environment, and they use clever design and sustainable materials to keep carbon use down – both during construction and when they’re being lived in.”