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02 April 2024

Introducing RLH Architectural as a new commercial partner

Introducing RLH Architectural as a new commercial partner

As part of a series of posts on Community Housing Cymru’s new commercial partners, Nick Cox, Commercial Director, explains why RLH Architectural chose to form a new partnership with our sector.

Why did RLH Architectural want to be a CHC commercial partner?

"We have been working in the sector for RSLs in Wales for some 15+years. Long before many of the other architectural practices would even look at the sector, we were forging ahead and trying to deliver the much-needed homes. Sadly, more than a decade later and the need is even greater!

We believe passionately in the sector and want to use our skillset to make a real difference. We are frustrated by the time it takes to get these homes through the planning system and built. The bureaucracy and red tape we encounter has led to the process taking an average of 12 months longer than it did a decade ago and that has to change!

Having previously been a Commercial Member of CHC, we have always seen them as the ‘voice in the room’, fighting for the sector and pushing the most pressing issues to the top of the various agendas.

We recognise a synergy in our purpose and feel aligned with the goals that CHC are hoping to achieve. Therefore, when CHC were looking for expressions of interest from the sector, we saw it as a great opportunity to rekindle our association and see if we can use our experiences over the previous years to help to drive forward change".

What benefits can RLH Architectural bring to our housing association members and the work that they do?

"Having worked with many RSLs across Wales for the last 15 years, we believe we bring a total understanding of what is required to deliver the much needed homes.

From initial feasibility layouts on sites, looking at the various constraints, through to planning and Welsh Government technical approval, technical design and onto construction, we have all the capabilities covered within our practice to make this process as streamlined as possible.

We believe we can help to change the way affordable housing is delivered, from ‘fast tracking’ the planning processes through to off-site construction and MMC, helping to deliver the schemes in the most efficient way possible.

We are looking ahead with extreme optimism that we can help to make a lasting difference to the sector right across Wales".

What services do you offer?

We offer a full suite of architectural services, from RIBA stage 0 (initial feasibility plans) through to RIBA Stage 3 (Full Planning Submissions).

We then work with Contractors through RIBA Stage 4 to undertake the full technical design, then onto RIBA Stage 5 (Construction), where we support the Contractor through answering site queries, checking third party designs etc, and then onto Stage 6, which includes handover & provision of As Built Information for both the client housing association and the contractor’s H&S file.

Find out more from RLH Architectural