Phase two for the demolition and rebuild of the rest of the North Devon Homes estate in Barnstaple to begin this autumn.

A £7 million contract for the next phase of regenerating the Forches Estate in Barnstaple has been awarded to Pearce Construction.

The second phase will see the demolition of the remaining North Devon Homes pre-reinforced concrete “Cornish unit” dwellings on the estate and the construction of a further 73 new homes.

Phase one of the scheme is already well underway, with 39 PRC homes demolished and work progressing on 65 new builds.

North Devon Homes has said work on phase two will begin in the autumn of this year, with completion scheduled for summer of 2014, bringing the total investment on the estate to £16m.

“We are very pleased that a locally based company has won the competitive tender for this exciting regeneration project,” said chief executive Martyn Gimber.

“Many local jobs will be created and it is fantastic news for the economy of North Devon.”

It is expected the project will create significant employment opportunities for local contractors.

“Pearce Construction is thrilled to be awarded the contract for the next phase of regeneration,” said Paul Knox, director at Pearce Construction Barnstaple.

“As a local company we are committed to the community and this will enable us to provide additional work for many of our subcontractors and our own direct employees as well as opportunities for trainee development.”

The project is being supported by £3.8 million investment from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).