Garages to to be replaced by affordable housing

Chorus Homes plans to replace garages in St Neots with affordable homes.

Chorus Homes plans to replace garages in St Neots with affordable homes. - Credit: CHORUS HOMES

Underused garages at seven sites in the St Neots area are set to be demolished and replaced by affordable housing.

Huntingdon-based social housing organisation Chorus Homes has applied to Huntingdonshire District Council to knock down blocks of more than 60 garages which tenants are “less keen” to use and to build  12 homes instead.

Chorus has warned that some of the garage areas are being used for unauthorised parking, although some of the garages are still in use.

The organisation, which has carried out similar work in Huntingdon, is seeking to knock down the garages in Mallard Lane, Duck Lane and Springbrook, Eynesbury. It believes the land would be better used for affordable housing.

The garages used to be part of the district council’s housing stock which subsequently became part of Chorus.

Chorus said: “Over the years the take up of garages has reduced mainly because cars have got bigger and the garages are not large enough to house them.

“Local people are less keen to park their cars remotely from their homes and so have made other arrangements.”

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Chorus said: “In recent times the garages have been used as storage buildings rather than for garaging motor vehicles. Chorus Homes has been demolishing vandalised garages and blocks not fit for use and removing the garages from rent.

“As the areas have no barriers or entrance controls, local people and residents from further afield have started to park on the areas where garages have been removed. These people have no rights to park on the land as it is private land owned by Chorus Homes and as the car owners are not paying any sort of rent/parking fee they have no rights to continue with this practice.

“Chorus Homes carried out a review of its garage stock and identified which garage courts are under used and can be redeveloped for much needed affordable housing in St Neots.”

It said it would contact tenants of garages still in use to see if they wanted to be relocated, adding: “It should be noted that Chorus Homes own other garage sites which there are no plans to redevelop and can be used as part of the decanting process.”