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Willmott Dixon appointed for exemplar stage of NW Bicester eco town

11 February 2014

Willmott Dixon has been appointed by A2Dominion for the initial stage of the UK’s first eco town, located in Bicester, Oxfordshire

Willmott Dixon has a £27 million contract to build the first 94 of the planned 393 true zero carbon homes that will make up the initial phase of the North West Bicester (NW Bicester) eco-town.  The initial phase, known as The Exemplar, has already been awarded BioRegional’s One Planet Living* status, making it just one of nine developments in the world to achieve this coveted mark of progress in sustainability.

NW Bicester aims to be a glimpse into the future of new residential developments that make minimal impact on the environment and promote sustainable lifestyles. This starts at the construction stage with zero waste going to landfill, using techniques and a supply chain that saw Willmott Dixon already achieve 95% waste division across all sites in 2013.

Further features that Willmott Dixon will deliver include achieving Code for Sustainable Homes Level 5, supported by PV solar panels on every home (covering an average area of 34m2 per property), making it the UK’s largest residential solar array and capable of generating power to supply 550 homes.

Charlie Scherer, chief operating officer for Willmott Dixon’s housing company says, “We’re delighted to be working with A2Dominion on the Exemplar phase at NW Bicester. We’ve shown from building projects such as the UK’s largest Passivhaus residential project and the world’s first PEFC-certified scheme that we work successfully with our partners to deliver homes that point towards a highly sustainable future for our new housing.

“NW Bicester is an ambitious project that provides a unique opportunity to set new environmental standards that will become the benchmark for other projects; we are looking forward to working with A2Dominion to achieve this.”

NW Bicester continues to adhere to the strict Planning Policy Statements (PPS1) originally set out by the Government for the delivery of eco towns, and A2Dominion project director, Steve Hornblow, says, “Willmott Dixon shares our commitment to quality results and importantly for this project; it has experience in building sustainable projects, meeting set environmental targets and delivering local labour opportunities.”

Charlie continues, “We will use local companies and construction materials whenever possible to support jobs and growth in the Bicester area. The local spend issue is important for us with NW Bicester providing important inward investment for the region. We’re aiming for a minimum of 20% labour from within a 20 miles radius to ensure we help sustain jobs and create many new ones.”

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