New Conwy “smart” homes will create 500 jobs

Plans have been unveiled for a £25 million development of “smart” homes in the Conwy Valley which will create nearly 500 jobs during construction.

Housebuilders Calon Homes have submitted a planning application to Conwy County Borough Council to build 111 houses on the 13-acre Maes-y-Felin site in Glan Conwy which they say will boost the local economy.

The community-conscious company have pledged to ensure around 95 per cent of the people employed on the development of two, three and four-bedroom family homes will be from the county of Conwy and, wherever possible, to buy materials from local suppliers.

Calon Homes is a joint venture between housing association Cartrefi Conwy, their subsidiary Creating Enterprise and Mochdre-based Brenig Developments.

The ground-breaking company, which has the blessing of the Welsh Government, is the first of its kind in Wales and Cartrefi Conwy will be using its 50 per cent share of the profits to plough into affordable housing.

Senior operations manager Bryn Roberts said: “The site just off the A470 will comprise family homes for first time buyers as well as second and third time buyers looking for their forever home.

“If the scheme is approved around 30 per cent of the properties will be affordable homes and all of them will have high levels of insulation and energy efficient boilers.

“They will be future-proofed to ensure they are ideal of modern-day life in the 21st centre, with smart monitoring of electricity and water usage.

“All the bedrooms will have with USB points and there will fibre optic superfast broadband coming to the door of every home.

“The superfast connectivity and technology will make them smart homes that are fit for the future.

“All of this technology will be provided as part of the standard specification and not as costly optional extras.

“That’s ideal for the growing number of people who are choosing to work from home these days.”

The Maes-y-Felin development is one that’s close to the hearts of two of the Calon Homes directors, Mark Parry and Howard Vaughan, who are also the joint managing directors of Brenig Construction.

Both were brought up in Glan Conwy and in his spare time Mr Vaughan is manager of the village’s men’s football team and a community governor of Ysgol Glan Conwy.

He said: “It’s a fantastic village and we are committed to supporting the community in every way we can.

“The development is also going to be great news for the local economy. Because of our links to Glan Conwy, we already employ around 15 to 20 people from the village directly or indirectly.

“If the development goes ahead it will give opportunities to even more local people and over the course of the development it will create just under 500 jobs directly and indirectly via the supply chain.

“Around 95 per cent of the people employed on the development will be from the county of Conwy.

“Construction jobs help the local community because the money is recycled in local shops and cafes. It’s estimated that every £1 amounts to £2.33 for local economy

“Wherever possible we tap into the local supply chain to ensure that a huge part of our spend stays in Conwy.”

It was a sentiment echoed by Cartrefi Conwy Chief Executive Andrew Bowden who said: “Calon Homes is a new kind of housing developer with a sense of community at the heart of everything we do.

“The aim is to build homes that are smart, energy efficient and sustainable – not just for today but for the future.

“The Maes y Felin development will be located in a beautiful community and we will be using our share of the profit to create more affordable housing so everyone will be a winner.”

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