‘Container-type structures’ could be used to house homeless families in Redbridge

General view of Trinity Buoy Wharf, a community made from old shipping containers, in Canning Town,

General view of Trinity Buoy Wharf, a community made from old shipping containers, in Canning Town, east London. - Credit: Empics Entertainment

Homeless families could be put up in “container-type structures” in an effort to tackle Redbridge’s housing crisis, papers have revealed.

The authority said options were being explored to bring down costs as it faces a rise in the number of people needing emergency temporary accommodation.

A budget report published this week included proposals for new temporary “container-type” homes to be built.

The initiative follows a successful project in Trinity Buoy Wharf, in Canning Town, east London, pictured above, where shipping containers were converted into homes.

But council leader Cllr Jas Athwal said the authority wanted to provide something “more upmarket”.

He said: “We do not want to be putting people in to what are effectively shipping containers.

“There are other alternatives we are exploring.”

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The document, due to go before the council cabinet on Monday, said planners preferred if timber structures were used.

Phil Herbert, managing director of homelessness charity the Healthy Living Project, welcomed the plans.

“Temporary container-type structures will deliver better, more spacious accommodation and provide residents with a suitable stepping stone to finding a permanent home,” he said.

“This however, is not a long term solution and needs to be coupled with a long term plan to develop permanent housing for those needing it most.”

While spending on temporary accommodation is expected to rise to £2.26million in 2017/18, Cllr Athwal said he was confident the council could make a “significant saving” to cover it.

But opposition leader Cllr Paul Canal said: “This hasn’t been thought through. We need more than a paragraph.

“We need a proper plan.”

See full budget report on p5

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