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Crest Nicholson closes sustainability gap to be named one of the top sustainable housebuilders of 2012

The UK homebuilding industry has become increasingly sustainable over the last eight years, and local developer Crest Nicholson has consistently ranked near the top of a national league table of the UK’s most sustainable housebuilders. The results follow the launch of this year’s annual NextGeneration benchmark, with Crest Nicholson’s results showing a significant eight percentage points improvement on 2011, and scoring 83 per cent in the benchmark.

The housebuilder, which is currently delivering two bedroom apartments at Park Central in Birmingham, has been listed as one of the top two developers in the UK. However, its latest jump in performance shows the extent to which Crest Nicholson is forging ahead, consistently raising sustainability standards to outperform other industry leaders in a number of key areas.

As well as scoring highly in areas including strategy, governance and tackling climate change, Crest Nicholson’s scores were also well above average in terms of transport and connectivity and customer and stakeholder engagement. Indeed, Crest Nicholson has already received many accolades for its high standards of customer service and currently holds a Home Builders Federation five star award for customer satisfaction, with over 90 per cent of purchasers saying that they would recommend the company to a friend. The NextGeneration benchmark is the only assessment of its kind that annually ranks the top 25 UK homebuilders’ performance in delivering sustainable homes and unites homebuilders with government, investors, industry experts and leaders to share best practice in sustainability. The comprehensive benchmark takes over six months to complete and assesses those developers responsible for constructing over 50 per cent of new homes in the UK each year with a combined construction value of £5 billion.

Homebuilders are assessed not only on the sustainability of the homes and communities they create, but also their own sustainability performance as a company, for example on such factors as Governance and Risk Management, and the amount of energy consumed onsite and in their offices.

Stephen Stone, Chief Executive of Crest Nicholson, said: “Driving innovation and progress in the delivery of new and cost-effective solutions for sustainable homes is essential for the industry, and we place significant emphasis on pioneering new approaches that will ensure low carbon communities become a mainstay for the future. The NextGeneration rankings demonstrate the extent to which every housebuilder is now rising to meet the challenge, and our consistently high ranking is a testament to the way in which sustainability has been embedded into every aspect of our business model.”

Stephen added: “For Crest Nicholson, sustainability has played a major role in delivering our strong underlying business fundamentals and the government’s commitment to sustainable housing policy plays to our strengths. 65 per cent of the homes we delivered last year were to EcoHomes, Code for Sustainable Homes Level 3, or Level 4 standards and designing the homes of the future, while still delivering homes our customers can be proud of, is an objective that underpins our entire delivery strategy.”

Philip Hirst from NextGeneration, said: “This year’s results demonstrate that an elite group of homebuilders are driving best practice in sustainability in the sector. This is the sixth year the benchmark has been undertaken and the improvement in performance from the first benchmark in 2006 is remarkable, with companies battling to outperform each other across 50 different categories and achieving an average improvement of around 10 per cent since 2006. At a time where Government is reviewing much of the key legislation that governs sustainability in homebuilding, NextGeneration members provide a beacon of how the private sector can collaborate to deliver sustainability performance beyond legislative requirements.”

At Park Central this focus on sustainability is evident in the new-build homes which boast the latest eco-friendly technologies, including thermally efficient windows and individual room thermostats. Additionally, all internal lighting is 100 per cent low energy.

As Ruth Williams, sales manager at Park Central, said: “Sustainability is not solely about environmental factors – although this is obviously a key concern – but rather purchasers are looking for new homes that tick every single box. Energy and water conservation, quality of design, protection of local ecology and management of public realm are all equally essential considerations in terms of creating a place where people want to live. At Park Central, we are committed to this broad inclusive approach, and the development is proving to be an extremely popular choice amongst purchasers keen to buy into the lifestyle on offer.”

Those people interested in viewing the new apartments at Park Central are encouraged to pre-book an appointment with the sales team by calling 0121 666 4666. For more information, visit the marketing suite, which is open daily from 10am to 5pm and is located at Park Central, Spring Street, Birmingham B15 2GD.

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