£500k short: Lincoln council to commit extra funds for bedsits

City of Lincoln Council’s Executive will meet next week to decide on plans to increase the budget of a project to modernise a sheltered housing facility by more than half a million pounds.

After submitting proposals with an estimated cost of £678,000, the council’s Executive agreed a budget of £726,050 in June 2013 to revamp the St Botolphs Court bedsits at the end of High Street.

The proposed work included replacing the kitchen units, installing new showers and radiators, and enclosing the balcony areas for each of the 52 bedsits on the site, which were built in 1974.

The remainder of the budget was set aside for improvements to the communal areas, removing asbestos, rewiring the court and installing carbon monoxide detectors in each bedsit.

livingroom-before

The living room of one of the bedsits before the modernisation

The living room of one of the bedsits before and after the modernisation

After the modernisation

A pilot conversion of one of the first floor bedsits was completed in January of this year, along with the ground floor property directly underneath.

Following the completion of the show home, a review of the costs was undertaken, with the findings revealing that the cost of delivering the project as a whole was significantly higher than originally planned.

The bathroom before the refurbishment

The bathroom before the refurbishment

After the modernisation

After the modernisation

The cost of the unforeseen refurbishment works is estimated to be £508,000, bringing the overall cost of the project to £1,234,050.

The council has said that the additional funding would be drawn from the available resources within the Housing Investment Programme.

Kevin Bowring, Acting Assistant Director of Housing at City of Lincoln Council, said: “St Botolphs Court is an important sheltered housing scheme that is now more than forty years old.

“Plans to modernise the building’s fifty two flats were approved in 2013 but it has become clear, as works take place, that this provides us with an opportunity to include other required works such as removing asbestos containing materials and rewiring the building.

“These additional works, alongside the original ones will help prolong the useable life of the building”.

The newly refitted kitchen unit

The newly refitted kitchen unit

The work will be carried out through the existing contract between the City of Lincoln Council and Kier Services.