Stoke-on-Trent City Council has announced it is to undertake a major £40m regeneration programme in order to deliver hundreds of affordable houses.
The scheme will be carried out by a public-private sector partnership — the first of its kind in the West Midlands city — between the council, Cheyne Capital and Homes England.
A total of 379 new affordable homes will be built in Stoke-on-Trent on cleared brownfield land and at a housing scheme where 155 low rise flats and maisonettes will be replaced with 226 new apartments.
The new accommodation will include rented housing, one-bed apartments for older people and family housing. It will also include more car parking, improved waste management facilities, extra security and landscaping.
The council has established its own company to be a registered provider of affordable housing, which will enable it to access grant support from the Government agency Homes England.
Cheyne Capital will use its Social Property Impact Fund to buy the land and fund the development and the city council will lease back the properties over 40 years after which it will have the opportunity to buy them for £1.
The council’s housing repairs and maintenance company Unitas will be responsible for maintaining the properties.
‘This project is really exciting. We have worked in a completely new and innovative way to put forward a programme of work that will deliver the multi-million pound regeneration of two areas of the city in need of attention,’ said Cllr Randy Conteh, cabinet member for housing, communities and safer city.
‘It is a project that we do not have the public funds available to lead alone; but by working collaboratively with the private sector we can raise the quality of accommodation and life of hundreds of families, and rejuvenate communities.’
Caroline Cormack, head of home ownership and supply in the Midlands for Homes England, said: ‘We welcome Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s ambitions for this development and are excited to be working with them to explore the best solutions for both of these sites to accommodate the housing needs of the local communities.’
Darren Carter, investment director for social property at Cheyne Capital, said: ‘We know that partnering socially responsible capital with councils and government agencies can accelerate the delivery of high quality, affordable and inclusive homes to communities that need them most.
‘We were impressed by Stoke-on-Trent Council’s progressive attitude towards addressing their housing needs and are excited to be involved in this landmark project.’