New council contracts deliver employment for residents and £28m in savings

New council contracts deliver employment for residents and £28m in savings

Two new long-term contracts have been awarded to provide major refurbishment works across Westminster City Council’s housing stock, delivering an estimated £28m in savings whilst providing better quality and value for money.

CityWest Homes, who manage 21,000 properties on behalf of Westminster City Council, have appointed Axis Europe in the north of the borough and United Living in the south to deliver all planned refurbishment works over the next 10 years. The appointment of the two contracts signifies a strategic move by CityWest Homes to encourage best practice, quality and value for money throughout all works, whilst ensuring each provider is familiarised with their area to guarantee maximum efficiency.

Savings have been achieved through procuring on a long-term basis replacing a project-based approach. The savings will be passed onto leaseholders and the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) enabling the council to provide more affordable homes as well as channelling further investment into existing stock..

Jim Paterson, Director of Property Services at CityWest Homes, said: “By procuring our contracts in this way we will not only save money on procurement costs, but ensure best practice from our providers thanks to the setting of competitive performance benchmarks.

“The length of the contracts will also ensure that both Axis Europe and United Living have the opportunity to develop strong relationships with not only us but our residents as well, making it much easier for them to feedback on projects and resolve any issues locally.”

In addition to delivering millions of pounds in savings, the new contracts are set to provide 400 job opportunities over the next 10 years for currently unemployed Westminster residents, as well as training and apprenticeship opportunities. This is along with opportunities provided by the organisation’s new repairs contracts which commenced earlier this year, delivering savings of over £3m per year.

Councillor Robathan, Cabinet Member for Housing, added: “As well as continuing to build new affordable homes across Westminster, it is really important that we look after our existing properties and the families who call them home.

“Not only will these contracts ensure that Westminster’s housing is maintained to the highest possible standard, but they will also offer employment opportunities for our residents allowing them to make the best of their lives in the centre of London.”

The new contractors will start to deliver major works across Westminster from December 2017 until 2027.

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