SHIPPING containers should be used as a temporary measure to tackle the housing crisis, says head of a homeless charity.
Converted shipping containers should be used on a much wider scale as temporary and emergency housing, the chief executive of BHT Sussex has told a housing conference this week.
Andy Winter was speaking at the conference organised by the Centre for Homeless Impact and the Cambridge Centre for Housing & Planning Research.
Richardson's Yard shipping container flats
Mr Winter had been asked to do a presentation on the experience of shipping container housing at Richardson’s Yard in Brighton, pioneered by BHT Sussex and its development partner, QED.
He said: “Until we have a fundamental change in government policy that sees a massive increase in the building of social housing with rents that people can truly afford, and we see those homes actually built, we will need imagination and innovation to make temporary housing solutions available.
“We provide 36 studio flats for people with a history of homelessness and rough sleeping.
“The land we have been using is available for us for a time-limited period of 10 years.
Kitchen and dining room_Richardsons Yard
“Container developments can be constructed quickly, are relatively cheap to produce, and can be let at rents that are affordable to people on benefits and in low waged employment.
“In my 37 years at BHT Sussex, our container homes project at Richardson’s Yard is one of the best things we have done.
“Shipping containers are just one option, and it should never be seen as providing permanent housing.
“They are not a substitute for permanent homes, but such is the worsening housing crisis, they are one temporary solution.”
BHT is a housing association and a homeless charity.
It provides services across Brighton and Hove, Eastbourne and Hastings, as well as elsewhere in Sussex.
Its services include: day centre provision, residential rehabilitation, mental health services, specialist housing and legal advice and work, learning and training initiatives.
BHT owns almost 500 homes in Brighton and Hastings, and leases a further 150 from private landlords including the shipping containers.
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