The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea has approved plans for a half billion pound luxury retirement complex. It includes just five affordable homes at a time when 14 families who survived the Grenfell Tower fire are still living in hotels 18 months on.

The Conservative controlled council granted consent for the scheme on a prime site in the south of the borough that includes 142 homes, some of which will b let for up to £10,000 a month.

Dubbed “caviar care” the scheme is designed to appeal to multi millionaire downsizers and includes three town houses expected to sell for about £12m apiece. The sale value of the mostly one bedroom and two bedroom flats averages £3.6m each. The developer is also marketing another luxury retirement complex nearby featuring a restaurant serving £250 pots of caviar.

There will only be five affordable homes in the complex on the site of Heythrop College, a former Catholic theological school. The developer, Westbourne Capital Partners, argues that the affordable housing contribution of five homes exceeds targets as it amounts to 54% of housing floor space, which its measures against the three homes that are for sale rather than 142 properties in total.

The housing will be open to anyone over the age of 65 if they can afford the rent. Younger buyers will have to show they have a care need. Three hours a week care is provided as part of the rent.

Johnny Sandelson, director of Westbourne, said the project provided “a social benefit” by meeting the need for high-end retirement homes and freeing up existing housing stock in the area. “We have provided the amount of affordable homes needed,” he said.

Source: The Guardian
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