The go-ahead has been given for 107 new homes in the Conwy Valley which are “ideal for homeworkers” and will provide a £60 million boost to the local economy.
Conwy County Borough Council’s planning committee gave their blessing to the Maes-y-Felin scheme on the outskirts of Glan Conwy.
According to Calon Homes, it will also create 500 jobs, with 95 per cent of the people employed coming from within a 20 mile radius of the 13-acre site just off the A470.
The community-conscious company have also committed to training local apprentices and to use local suppliers wherever possible.
Around 30 per cent of the two, three and four-bedroom properties will be affordable family homes.
All of them will be highly insulated, and pre-wired for fibre optic superfast broadband, making them ideal for people who work remotely from home.
Even the gardens will have internet and power connection points making them perfect to work outside on a sunny day.
They also come with a special app to control the energy efficient heating systems remotely.
Calon Homes is a joint venture between housing association Cartrefi Conwy, their subsidiary Creating Enterprise and Mochdre-based Brenig Developments.
The ground-breaking company, which has the blessing of the Welsh Government, is the first of its kind in Wales and Cartrefi Conwy will be using its 50 per cent share of the profits to plough into affordable housing.
Senior operations manager Bryn Roberts said: “The Maes-y-Felin scheme is a flagship development for Calon Homes and the fact that the planning application has been approved is fantastic news.
“It is going to provide much-needed family homes with plenty of outside space.
“The construction phase will create a lot work for local contractors and a massive economic boost for the area, not least with the local suppliers we will be using.
“The workforce, from groundworkers and brickies and from electricians to roofers will be locally sourced within a 20 mile radius.”
According to two of the Calon Homes directors, Mark Parry and Howard Vaughan, they were particularly proud of this project because they were childhood friends who grew up in Glan Conwy and went on to establish Brenig Construction together in 2012.
Mr Vaughan said: “We are future-proofing these properties with superfast connectivity and technology, and every socket will have charging points for mobile phones and iPads.
“Even the garden areas will have internet and power connection points to make the most of the outside space with the increase in people working from home, allowing them to bring the inside out.
“All of this technology will be provided as part of the standard specification and not as costly optional extras.
“That’s ideal for the growing number of people who are choosing to work from home these days.
“It’s a trend that has accelerated as the result of the pandemic and it’s seems certain that far more people will be working from home in future, either all the time or splitting their time between remote working and going into the office.
“Owners will be able to control their heating system from an app on their phone. It will include an option that will trigger the heating to come on if you’re within a two mile radius of the property.
“Equally, if you’re on a winter break abroad and you’re worried about frost you will be able to switch on the heating wherever you are in the world.”
Cartrefi Conwy chief executive Andrew Bowden said: “We chose the name Calon Homes with great care because we want the sense of community to be at the heart of everything we done.
“It is an innovative business model that will enable us to use our share of the profits to create more affordable housing to meet the growing demand for smart, energy efficient and sustainable homes.”