News & Stories

LaunchPad lift off

We are delighted to announce that planning permission has been granted for LaunchPad will commence building on the car park at the bottom of Alexandra Park, Fishponds in September. LaunchPad is a partnership of innovative collaborators, 1625 Independent People (1625ip), University of Bristol Students Union and United Communities and funded by LandAid and the University of Bristol.

The team is designing LaunchPad in a way that brings a diverse group of young people together in high quality, affordable accommodation, meeting a vital need in the city. University students will live alongside young key workers, such as nurses and teachers, and young people moving on from 1625ip supported housing. 1625ip will support the young people to work together, make a positive contribution and establish a well-managed community, with self-management and mutual support at its heart. We see LaunchPad as a great opportunity to create a ‘one city’ approach that brings our communities together in a positive way.

Bristol faces multiple challenges including housing, affordability, studentification and a mental health crisis.  Indeed, homelessness is on the rise in Bristol with a 128% increase over the last 3 years (Homeless Link statistic).  These issues are keenly felt by Bristol’s young people and are creating significant barriers to their ability to thrive.  LaunchPad is determined to be part of the solution.  We believe in supporting a young person’s journey;  integrating young people who are particularly passionate about connecting with others and proactively building community.

LaunchPad is one of the Bristol Housing Festival’s first two projects, following on from the inaugural exhibition in October 2018. Demonstrating innovation in technology, community building and land use, these projects are being made possible by the multiple partner collaborations on each scheme. Over five years the Bristol Housing Festival will act as an incubator to road-test innovation in real-world scenarios to accelerate the delivery of quality, affordable housing supporting healthy and resilient communities.

“LaunchPad is an incredibly exciting development demonstrating what’s possible when pairing innovation and collaboration. This project will make a real difference for the lives of the young people living there as well as showing what is possible when we have the courage to reimagine. We are delighted to be involved!” – Jessie Wilde, Bristol Housing Festival