Earlier this year, The Bristol Housing Festival partnered with Bristol One City in an application for Bristol to be a host city for the Climate Smart Cities Challenge – a global competition which was launched this week at the World Expo in Dubai inviting innovators to help cities reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. We were delighted that Bristol was chosen in March as one of the four host cities for the challenge, and have been working on defining the challenge brief with partners and city stakeholder over the past few months. To find out more or enter the competition, see the website, or watch the launch online.
Goram Homes is proud to be part of the core team that will see this challenge unlock NetZero, affordable housing in Bristol, and hope to provide a site on which to pilot and test possible solutions.
The challenge is hosted by Nesta, the UK’s innovation agency, and is an initiative of UN-Habitat and other partners*. The goal is to develop, test and scale cutting edge solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Bristol by rethinking new build housing. It reflects many of Bristol’s priorities which are laid out in the One City Plan and the Climate Emergency Action Plan.
Bristol partners have stressed that the challenge we face is not that the technology to build affordable, low carbon housing doesn’t exist, but that the added cost means these solutions are not viable for all stakeholders. The hope is that innovators can work on a new financial or development appraisal model that can rethink value and the priority of immediate capital return.
As the Council’s housing company, Goram Homes works in partnership with the private sector to build developments that include market sale and affordable homes to create mixed communities across Bristol. We have adopted the RIBA 2030 Climate Challenge Targets and are committed to building new homes that are socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable. We therefore look forward to being part of this initiative to help solve the viability issue all developers face.
Bristol’s goal for all new build housing to be carbon neutral by 2030, and yet we also have a housing crisis which impacts our city’s most vulnerable people. Together, the core team, which also includes Bristol City Council, Bristol City Office, and the Bristol Housing Festival, hope to find new solutions that demonstrate how we can create housing that is good for people and the planet, within a viability model that means it can be scaled. We see this as part of our role as the city’s own development company and are excited to see this challenge unfold.
* Project partners are: Nesta, Teknikföretagen, Viable Cities, UN-Habitat, Smart City Sweden, Vinnova, the Swedish Energy Agency, Expo 2020 Sweden and Business Sweden