Stoke-on-Trent extra-care housing PFI awarded

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Stoke-on-Trent extra-care housing PFI awarded

The Sapphire consortium has been named preferred bidder by Stoke-on-Trent City Council for the Stoke-on-Trent extra care housing PFI project.

The project will be delivered through a private finance initiative, with an estimated cost of £100 million (US$164.6 million).

Sapphire will build, finance and operate 390 extra care apartments over a 25-year period in partnership with the Council. The consortium, is made up of four companies:

Sapphire has been selected to deliver the villages based on a Private Finance Initiative (PFI) procurement process which started in November 2011. Sapphire was shortlisted in March 2012. The consortium was compenting against two other bidder: Balfour Beatty and Equitix.

Speaking on behalf of the Sapphire consortium, Richard Turpin from the Eric Wright Group, said:

"We are delighted to have secured this prestigious contract. The consortium that we put together for this project has worked in partnership to develop a compelling bid and we are looking forward to making our plans for the villages a reality for the people of Stoke."

Following its appointment on 20 December, Sapphire has submitted a planning application for each village. Designs have been developed by PRP Architects, specialists in extra care design, using information compiled during dialogue with the council. The determination of the planning applications is expected early this year to allow a construction start date of spring 2014.

The villages will be created at three sites across the city for people aged over 55 and will be fully-occupied by 2017. The villages will offer spacious apartments within a community setting, with facilities on site and conveniently located transport links.

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