Hornby Flats for One Vision Housing won top award for the Most Innovative Retrofit Scheme.  The Hornby Flats project extends the life of low rise social housing built in the 1950’s by implementing innovative energy efficiency improvements and delivering a high quality sympathetic finish.  The exterior refurbishment will reduce the carbon footprint of the building and tackle fuel poverty by reducing energy bills for the residents.

The concept upgrades the building fabric in terms of design, aesthetic and technical performance while retaining the community in-situ.  While the use of external insulation is the obvious technical solution, the original post- war design has been respected and enhanced through the use of applied mouldings, textures and finishes to develop a new but sympathetic character, well liked by the residents who have been involved throughout the process.

Special consideration has been given to ventilation, particularly in view of the improved air-tightness of the externally insulated building fabric. A new positive air ventilation system is positioned in the hall of each flat.  Fresh air is drawn in and circulated to dispel condensation and to improve the air quality of the living environment.

Intensive attention to detail has been used by the team to ensure that “cold bridges” are eliminated.  As an additional feature little used open balconies have been converted into “winter gardens” by enclosing with bi-fold windows.  This adaptation provides amenity space usable in all weathers while assisting passive solar gain in winter and natural ventilation in summer.

These innovations have fulfilled the objectives of enhancing the living environment of residents including the health and welfare of the occupants while retaining a sense of community in familiar surroundings and avoiding the disruption of a move.  Community sustainability as well as environmental sustainability has been achieved.

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