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Procurement of Contractor(s) to Deliver Energy Efficiency Improvements and Works to Reduce Carbon Emissions From Council Housing

31/03/2022 - Procurement of Contractor(s) to Deliver Energy Efficiency Improvements and Works to Reduce Carbon Emissions From Council Housing

Matter for Decision

The Council commissioned a report in 2021 to establish a high-level cost estimate of how the Council could retrofit existing Council properties to be net zero carbon. This report sought approval for a pilot project to retrofit up to fifty Council properties to establish the actual cost and methodology of achieving net zero carbon in existing Council properties.


Decision of Executive Councillor for Housing

      i.         Approved the issue of tenders and authorised the Director of Neighbourhoods and Communities to award a contract(s) to a contractor(s) to deliver energy efficiency works and works to reduce carbon emissions from Council housing in 22/23 and 23/24, with an option to extend for one or more periods up to a maximum of two years.


Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.


Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.


Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Asset Manager.


The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

i.      Asked what the implications of the report would be for leaseholders.

ii.    Pleased to note that 50 properties were going to be improved however noted that there was over 1000 council properties which needed to be improved as well as other stock in Cambridge.

iii.   Suggested the use of the Open Door residents’ magazine, Cambridge Matters magazine and voluntary organisations such as Cambridge Carbon Footprint to encourage other people in the city to consider how they could retrofit their properties. 

iv.  Asked what could be done to assist households on low incomes to retrofit their properties.

v.    Asked if there was any obligation to take on local contractors as part of the procurement process to retain knowledge locally.

vi.  Noted that access to properties would be the biggest challenge with this project. Noted that officers were planning a pilot in a particular area but asked if officers may take up other opportunities if they arose for example retrofitting an empty property.  


The Asset Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

      i.         Pilot studies would be undertaken looking at different archetypes as well as low rise one bed flats. It was proposed in the first instance to run a pilot with a council owned block of flats. Officers would work through any implications for a mixed tenure block of flats.

    ii.         Officers would take advantage of any government funding to assist with retrofitting, but this was likely to only be available for council properties and not leasehold properties.

   iii.         Officers were working with the Environmental Health Team to investigate whether grants could be offered to the private housing sector. 

  iv.         Officers would consider local contractors as a criterion within the procurement process, but it depended on the length of the contract and if it was a standard procurement or a call-off from a framework procurement.

    v.         Officers hoped that residents in the chosen area would be interested to take part in the pilot scheme but if they weren’t then officers would need to re-consider their approach.


The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.


The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.


Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.