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CPCA approves £200m application for government housing fund

Words: Laura Edgar
New housing / Shutterstock_198728240

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA) board members have voted to support the authority’s bid to the government for £200 million to fund the delivery of thousands of new jobs.

The application is for money from the Department for Communities and Local Government’s (DCLG) Housing Infrastructure Fund.

The cash would aid the development of a 48-hectare brownfield site adjacent to the Cambridgeshire Business Park. It straddles both Cambridge city and South Cambridgeshire, and is near the newly open Cambridge North rail station.

The site is currently home to the Anglian Water Wastewater Recycling facility and has been identified by CBRE, which advises the combined authority, as the best scheme to put forward for money from the fund.

Bids are due to be assessed by the DCLG and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) by November. If selected, business cases are to be submitted by spring 2018, and a decision will be announced next summer.

If the bid is successful 7,600 homes that have been stalled owing to the cost of relocating the recycling facility could be built.

A high percentage of the homes would be “affordable”.

The development of the site could see 30,000 construction jobs and associated services jobs created.

Peter Topping, leader of South Cambridgeshire District Council and portfolio holder for housing on the CPCA, said: “Anyone who has used the new Cambridge North railway station, or works nearby, can see what a good place this is to develop. The area is brownfield land that is on the doorstep of a rail link. There is still some way to go before we know whether the government supports our bid, but I am very hopeful, as it meets a real and compelling need.”

The Housing Infrastructure Fund was launched in July 2017 by communities secretary Sajid Javid, after being initially announced as part of £23 billion National Productivity Investment Fund by chancellor Philip Hammond in the 2016 Autumn Statement.

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