Manchester City Council

No Time to Stop

I said I'd say a little about yesterday's Executive Committee meeting. The first hour was spent on the Comprehensive Spending Review, something I've already talked about and will return to next month when we will have a report on the expected impact of the CSR on Manchester residents.

There were a number of other reports though showing how we are able to keep the city moving (in a couple of cases literally) forwards even in these difficult times. I won't go into detail because they're all publicly available to those of you who wish to know more and will pick out just three items. The first concerns the Bowes Street area of Moss Side. This is an area of older housing which we have proposed to remodel with new build housing on an adjacent but linked site. Home ownership has become increasingly difficult particularly for first time buyers and we are proposing to sell a number of refurbished (currently empty) properties where the City Council will retain an up to 30% equity stake. This means a purchaser only has to find as little as 70% of the sale price with the rest only being paid on the onward sale of the property.

The second is the renewal of the contract for the city centre free Metroshuttle bus services which will now be using upgraded diesel-electric hybrid vehicles. The Council's share of paying for this comes from something called the parking reserve built up from parking charges and the service now carries over two and a half million passengers a year.

Last but not least, the former Royal Eye Hospital. This Grade 2 listed building is to be converted and extended creating a unique 10,000 sq.m centre for the bio-medical sector. Four hundred and fifty net additional new jobs at this project were under threat when NWDA grant was withdrawn but ( with help from the NWDA ) we have now found an alternative way of keeping the scheme going. Homes, jobs and the means to get from one to the other.

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There are 3 responses to “No Time to Stop”

  1. Ian Says:

    Must say well done for the idea of getting the council involved in the housing market. The idea of not selling the whole is a good idea.

  2. Jennie Says:

    Agree with first commnet, but can you be sure not to benefit speculators? I imagine that you will take names from the housing list where a household can move from renting to part-ownership.
    It could benefit a mix of tenure, but a variety of size might be needed.

  3. Sharon Says:

    There are a number of properties on the Bowes Street project. It includes the refurbishment and of a number of existing terrace properties and 7 new build properties. Of the 64 existsing terrace proeprties there are 10 number 2 into 1 conversions which will provide larger 3/4 bedroom. In addition a number of the individual terrace refurbishments houses include extensions to the rear. In total the project will deliver 6 different property layout providing a mix of property sizes and layout to suit a diverse number of needs.

 

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The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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