Homes England, Muse and Legal & General recommit to The English Cities Fund to develop 6,600 more homes and deliver on the Levelling Up agenda. The move enables the £200m joint venture to continue to deliver transformational regeneration schemes, including 6,600 new homes and 2m sq ft of innovation and commercial space in high priority Levelling Up areas, beginning with St Helens and Salford Crescent.
Homes England, the Government’s housing and regeneration agency, Legal & General and national regeneration business, Muse Developments, have reconfirmed their commitment to their long-standing partnership, The English Cities Fund (ECF), for a further ten years to December 2036. This will enable it to continue to deliver against its mission to transform deprived, urban areas and create exceptional new places across England, tripling its development potential to date.
This includes a major £2.5bn, 240-acre scheme that ECF has secured at Salford Crescent in partnership with Salford City Council and the University of Salford, which will bring over 3,000 homes, alongside up to 1m sq ft of space to innovate and collaborate, 1m sq ft of offices, retail, leisure and a new multi-modal transport hub with active travel at its heart to the city, all set within swathes of green space. A catalytic infrastructure and public-realm project, Salford Rise, which received £13.17m from the first lot of Levelling Up Funding, will deliver a green boulevard in the sky that stretches over Frederick Road to connect communities across the city to the opportunities the regeneration will create.
Another example is the once-in-a-generation, borough-wide transformation of St Helens, starting in the town centres of Earlestown and St Helens itself. ECF has partnered with St Helens Borough Council to bring forward opportunities to sustainably repurpose and regenerate areas across the borough, such as delivering a new market hall, grade-A office space, high-quality, town-centre homes, active transport infrastructure, along with extensive public realm improvements. This vision was bought one step closer to reality in February 2022, when the council’s cabinet signed off on the Masterplan Development Frameworks, prior to a planning application later this year.
Together, the regeneration of these two key Levelling Up areas will deliver more than 4,000 of the 6,600 new homes.
Bill Hughes, Head of LGIM Real Assets, said:
For 20 years the English Cities Fund partnership has been delivering disruptive regeneration – it’s a major example of the impact and opportunity that come as a result of public and private sector collaboration. But, more work is needed to continue to level up our UK towns and cities.
The extension of the English Cities Fund will play a key role in ensuring we truly level up and transform those areas most in need. As we extend the Fund we are confident that we will have more opportunities to deliver urban developments which show real imagination, and unlock value for our partners and their communities.
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