Retirement Villages Group (RVG) has selected McAleer & Rushe to deliver its integrated retirement community in Royal Tunbridge Wells, England, UK. 

The project is aimed at revitalising the former ABC cinema site. 

Located at the intersection of Church Road and Mount Pleasant Road, the site has not been used for more than 20 years. 

The upcoming community will feature 167 one and two-bedroom apartments for older residents, centred around a courtyard with additional retail spaces.  

This development is part of RVG’s Thrive Living collection, which is aimed at fostering urban communities for the active older generation.  

RVG CEO Will Bax said: “We are thrilled to bring Thrive Living to Tunbridge Wells and unlock a brownfield site that has sat derelict in the heart of the town for over 20 years. 

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“Modern retirement living needs to reflect the attitudes of a new generation of elders, who want to live with purpose and embrace the opportunities of connected and sociable living, creating their own active, urban community in an existing town setting.” 

The architecture of the new development will reflect the art deco style of the previous cinema and the 1950s aesthetic of the town’s hall.  

RVG has committed to a whole-life net-zero carbon goal for the project, ensuring the community will have a minimal carbon footprint during both construction and operation. 

The development will use an all-electric heating and hot-water system, powered by rooftop air-source heat pump systems.  

The site is said to have a complex topography, including a 9m level difference and its location above a Network Rail tunnel. 

McAleer & Rushe director Shane McCullagh said: “We look forward to working closely with RVG to bring their vision to life, to create and integrate an enhanced retirement community with the wider urban town setting, benefiting all in the transformation of this brownfield site.” 

The contract marks McAleer & Rushe’s entry into the retirement sector, diversifying its portfolio as a design-and-build contractor.

Construction is expected to commence this month.