The funding will be used to clear an area of derelict land on Booth Street, in Stoke, and unlock the land to support the building of new homes in the future.
The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) today announced the allocation of a further £11 million from the Brownfield Land Release Fund (BLRF) to support 23 redevelopment schemes across 15 councils. The council’s successful bid comes just weeks after the city secured £56 million in levelling up funding for a raft of regeneration projects in Stoke-on-Trent, that will transform the area and provide an enormous boost to jobs and the local economy.
The £700,000 grant will be used to address ground contamination and stability issues on the former waste disposal and depot site that currently restrict the site’s redevelopment.
Cllr Carl Edwards, cabinet member for housing and environment, said: “It’s fantastic news we have received this money to allow us to hopefully accelerate the redevelopment of this site. A new housing era is under way in Stoke-on-Trent and we’re focused on helping people step into home ownership, building a wider range of houses for owner occupiers, as well as building more custom and self-build homes, which are some of the key priorities of the draft housing strategy currently being progressed. There have been significant improvements in the type and choice of houses residents now have in the city and we are committed to keeping that work up.
“The site is a stone’s throw away from Stoke town centre, so redeveloping it with housing would support shops and businesses by providing increased footfall. It would also breathe further new life into an area which has already been transformed with the housing redevelopment on the site of the old Victoria Ground just around the corner. Any future housing development on the site would feature a significant number of affordable housing, including provision of social rent homes for older people, and homes for people looking to get a foot on the property ladder, creating a new, sustainable and socially diverse community and a great place to live.
“The first step is obviously tackling the issues with the land on the site and unlocking it for development, which this money will allow us to do. We have a very impressive track record for bringing forward housing developments on brownfield land and this project will carry on that good work, and significantly improve the appearance of the area. And we will make sure there is a contract clause in any future development that requires local apprentices and sub-contractors being used, to make sure we keep the Stoke pound in Stoke.”
Latest figures show nearly all the new housing built in the city in 2019/20 – 99.7 per cent – was built on brownfield land, up from 98 per cent in the previous year. The funding, announced by Government today, is subject to acceptance from the city council’s cabinet.