Built for Life assessments success

The Design Network has just completed three pilot Building for Life 12 assessment meetings, awarding Built for Life accreditation to at least eight housing schemes.

At the request of the Building for Life partnership, which includes the Home Builders Federation, the Design Network has piloted a new method of assessing housing schemes for the Built for Life award.  Three meetings took place around the country to look at 13 schemes.  MADE took part in the meeting in Bristol which assessed schemes from the South West and Midlands. 

Built for Life is not an award for design excellence, but recognises those housing schemes with a high standard of place-making.  Crucially house builders can use their Built for Life accreditation to promote their schemes to buyers.  The new assessment method involves a small panel of design experts who assess the scheme against the Building for Life 12 questions.  House builders are present at the assessment meetings meaning that design decisions and constraints can be understood.  

The pilot assessments awarded Built for Life to eight schemes straight away with one receiving Built for Life Outstanding for 12 ‘greens’.  We are awaiting further information on some of the remaining schemes.

Although the Design Network members had to deal with some teething problems and lessons were learnt, the pilot assessments were judged to be a success by a meeting of the Building for Life partners a week later.  It is now planned to launch the new assessment method in the New Year and Design Network members will be scheduling assessment meetings in each of their regions.