Present Made acquires a second site to deliver Mill View, a Build to Rent scheme in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc.
Apache Capital’s single-family housing platform – Present Made – is the UK’s first company to develop, own and operate single-family Built to Rent homes. The company has today announced plans for its largest Build to Rent scheme to date – named Mill View – on a site in Central Bedfordshire. The 68-ha site was acquired from Valorem Investment Partners (‘Valorem’) and is situated at Thickthorn Farm – just north of Houghton Conquest – and forms part of the wider Wixams Park masterplan. Valorem achieved outline planning consent in 2018 following the freehold acquisition of the farm in 2014.
“We are delighted to have sold the property to Present Made having delivered a planning consent that will provide much needed affordable housing, public open space within the Country Park and schooling for the local community.” Anthony Maxwell-Jones, Founder, Valorem Investment Partners
Present Made – which is wholly owned and fully funded by investment manager Apache Capital – aims to create a new community at Mill View that promotes health, wellbeing and sustainability and is integrated with its surroundings. The Mill View scheme will deliver 650 precision engineered, smart eco Build to Rent homes – a mix of two, three and four-bedroom homes – of which 35% will be affordable. The homes – which will be owned and operated by Present Made for the long-term – will be highly energy efficient thanks to the integration of smart technology and use of modern methods of construction. Such technologies will be crucial to Present Made meeting its net zero carbon operational target. Under designs by award-winning Jo Cowen Architects, Mill View will combine important green infrastructure with beautiful connections to support residents and wildlife, along with landscape corridors to create opportunities for active travel across the site.
The £215m GDV development will also include a primary school and an 87-acre country park which will be open to the public and make up over half the site’s total area. There will be a range of onsite amenities which are free for Present Made residents to use. Residents will also benefit from onsite professional management provided by a dedicated in-house team, who will help organise events and other communal activities in the shared spaces – as well as handling any maintenance issues. The Mill View scheme is the company’s second site in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc, with its£160m flagship development forming a key part of the University of Cambridge’s award-winning 150-ha Eddington masterplan. Present Made has an initial £1.6bn development pipeline which will see over 3,000 precision engineered smart homes delivered across ten sites in southern England.
“Today’s announcement demonstrates the seriousness of our ambition in creating the UK’s leading purpose-built and designed single-family housing platform, delivering large-scale schemes using modern methods of construction and putting health, wellbeing and sustainability at the heart of our designs. “Present Made was appointed by the University of Cambridge to deliver housing as part of its Eddington masterplan as they were impressed by the quality and the originality of our proposals, and Present Made of Mill View will similarly be an exemplar scheme that sets new benchmarks for design, quality and service in the UK’s single-family housing sector. “Fundamentally we want to do more than simply offer people a better home, we want to offer them a better lifestyle, where living sustainably is second nature. That is why we have invested heavily into the master-planning, design, and development of our neighbourhoods and also considered carefully the services and amenities that we will provide onsite. “There is currently no purpose-built family rental housing in the UK despite couples with children being one of the fastest growing segments of the renting population. Present Made of Mill View will not only offer a new type of high-quality sustainable housing that is both flexible yet secure in tenure while still being attainable to people on ordinary incomes.”
Richard Jackson, Co-founder of Apache Capital and CEO at Present Made
Written by Nick Biring – for BTR News Online