By Cherry Ellis
A multi-million rand affordable housing development comprising 638 units was launched in March in Fourways.
The Tirong Estate development was designed and developed by Derek Warren Developments (DWD) in partnership with International Housing Solutions. “We are known to develop high-end family homes and are proud to be associated with an affordable housing estate.
“Partnering with IHS, is a huge plus for us, their expertise and structures they have in place, help pave the way and clear possible barriers and challenges for us with their global network of contacts,” says Derek Warren, managing director at DWD.
Derek Warren Developments (DWS) targets the Northern suburbs of Johannesburg, is an approved developer in various residential estates including Cedar Creek, Olivewood, Helderfontein, Steyn City, Monaghan farm and works extensively in Chartwell Country Estates, Bryanston and Fourways.
Derek Warren Developments has also gone national with an office in KwaZulu-Natal and various projects underway on the Natal North Coast. The new business venture Tirong ext. 12 falls within this target area.
The first phase has already been sold out and (unlike similar developments) this project has the look and feel of a modern housing estate. It overlooks the picturesque mountains of Magaliesberg and is close to malls, schools, recreational facilities and will house about 2 000 people.
The land where the 240 000m2 estate is being built brings back fond memories for Warren, who grew up not far from there – he used to cycle in the field as a child. “It is such a proud moment for us to, with this development, tie in with the new vision that government, municipalities and everybody has, integrating affordable housing in old established residential areas,” says Warren.
International Housing Solutions – IHS is committed to our colleagues, customers, future generations and the communities where we live and work. We encourage colleagues to engage in community outreach activities and believe in giving back to our communities through volunteer efforts and team-driven community improvement initiatives. IHS contributes to the development of economic transformation and Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment.
The land was first earmarked for low industrial sites or self-storage units, but around 2003 council’s Regional Spatial Development frame work established it for a high density residential area.
Tirong Estate is a highly secure, walled and gated estate. Its features include a 2.4m high perimeter wall with 12 strand electric fencing on top, state of the art CCTV surveillance system throughout the estate, biometric access control and two entrances each with 24-hour manned guardhouses and control rooms.
The estate is centrally located to Fourways Precinct and Fourways Mall, Cosmo Mall and Northgate Mall and is easily accessed via Malibongwe Drive or Witkoppen Road and is close to the N14 Krugersdorp / Pretoria freeway.
The estate consists of 638 single family homes. Buyers can choose from five different size floor plans ranging from 40.5m² to 80m² placed on a generous size stand ranging from 150m² to 300m² and priced below R500 000 up to R779 000.
The options include:
- The 40.5m² offers two bedrooms, one bathroom, an open plan lounge and kitchen with a garden and parking space for two vehicles.
- The 50m² offers three bedrooms, one bathroom, an open plan lounge and kitchen with a garden and parking space for two vehicles.
- The 60m² unit offers three bedrooms, one bathroom, an open plan lounge and kitchen with a garden and parking space for two vehicles.
- The 70m² offers three bedrooms, two bathrooms, open plan lounge, dining room and kitchen with a garden and parking space for two vehicles.
- This 80 m² offers three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a guest toilet, open plan lounge, dining room and kitchen with a garden and parking space for two vehicles.
“We build ourselves but have been engaging with a local community liaison officer to employ local labour. This has worked to our advantage and the community is happy. We have even employed a salesman from the community, who has already sold 35 units,” says Warren.
Engaging with the community, DWD, got involved with a corporate social investment project as well. “At the bottom field of the development the locals had a soccer field where 17 teams played on a regular basis. We spoke to the community liaison officer and explained to him that the boundary wall will be going up and that they would no longer be able to use that space. We identified an area inside the informal settlement and built a soccer field for them. We hired the plant, compacted the field and donated 17 soccer kits to the teams,” says Warren.
As the houses are EDGE registered, DWD included certain elements to make the houses ‘green’.
“Our homes are EDGE certified by the Green Building Council of South Africa, which means our houses are better for the environment, use less energy and water and are truly ‘green homes’. The estimated monthly utility saving is a minimum of up to 20% less as a result of the interventions implemented in the Edge Certification process,” adds Warren.
Timber roof trusses
“Our interventions include adjusting our construction that the embodied energy is slightly reduced. Our roof trusses for example are timber and not light weight steel which is normally used in comparable developments.
“The reason we’ve gone with timber is embodied energy in timber is less than in steel. We are using maxi bricks as opposed to a 220-brick wall – the result is that the embodied energy in the super structure of the house is slightly less. On the actual energy side of it we have reduced the power consumption all of the lights and are using led light fittings. Our solar geysers are larger than the normal solar geyser SANS 10400, we’ve made them bigger so we have greater saving on the solar geysers and then we put in light control mechanisms for day and night light sensors,” Warren says.
Aluminium window frames are also installed, this not only gives a better finish to the product but keeps the heat in the house, cooling the house in summer and without air leaking out.
Insulation is a cellulose fibre insulation material which is made from recycled newspaper and DWS has put in a flame retardant, so the houses are well insulated – cooler in summer and warmer in winter.
Warren says the taps and shower heads reduce water flow as they are fitted flow restrictions and the toilet is a dual flush toilet to reduce water consumption.
“We are installing smart meters as well. This enables the homeowner to monitor their consumption and identify if there are any water leaks and so on,” says Warren.
“These interventions have given us the required savings that we must comply with, we are sitting with an average of 30% saving, a year per unit that is equivalent to one month’s bond payment, which is outstanding for this development compared to similar projects.
An added value is that fibre for internet connection is to be installed and each unit is provided with a connection for free of charge so it will reduce the running costs for the actual state moving forward.
“Depending on the packages the buyers choose, free voice calls within the development will be possible. Fibre is changing lifestyles for people to be able to study, use the internet and so on. It’s a massive educational tool and will impact positively on the lifestyle of the future owners of this estate,” says Warren.
Tirong Estate homes have various value-added features which include access to fibre to the home, aluminium windows, rolled aluminium gutters, LED light fittings, Hans Grohe taps and smart meters.