Need to know: South Yorkshire heads for devolution deal

Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield councils and Sheffield city region mayor make progress with devolution deal for region.

Transport is among the investment priorities for the South Yorkshire devolution deal (PIC Travel South Yorkshire)
Transport is among the investment priorities for the South Yorkshire devolution deal (PIC Travel South Yorkshire)

A devolution deal for South Yorkshire has been agreed by Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield councils and the Sheffield city region mayor. The deal originated in 2015, with the mayor set to have power over transport, strategic planning and skills across the region. But it has been delayed by divisions, notably over the prospect of a deal covering the whole of Yorkshire. The progress has been welcomed by communities secretary Robert Jenrick and the proposed deal is now set to go out to public consultation. Councillor Julie Dore, leader of Sheffield City Council, said the South Yorkshire deal was, “about investing in infrastructure, including transport links, and supporting local businesses to become good employers and provide jobs.”

Housing associations started to build more than 50,000 homes in the 12 months to end September 2019, some 43,000 of which were affordable, according to the latest supply briefing from housing association body the National Housing Federation. The number of overall starts is 13.5 per cent up on the September 2018 figure, and affordable housing starts were up 16.5 per cent. Completions reached almost 46,000 overall – up 7.9 per cent on the previous year – with 38,600 being affordable, up 5.5 per cent.

Waltham Forest Council is to partner with developer Countryside to deliver 500 homes and a civic building in the second phase of redevelopment of its town hall campus in north east London. The homes are earmarked for two sites: the campus site and Willow House. Work is in progress on the first phase of the redevelopment, which includes pedestrianisation works and renovation of the grade 2 listed town hall.

Developer Linkcity has finalised its deal with partners Canterbury City Council, investor Harrison Street and housing association Hyde Group to bring forward a mixed use development in Canterbury. The planned Riverside scheme will be developed on the site of a former coach park and Serco depot. The proposal includes more than 4,600 square metres of retail, leisure and restaurant space, 491 student residences, 189 affordable homes and a public square. The scheme will be anchored by a Curzon cinema, the student accommodation will be owned under an 80:20 equity split between Harrison Street and Uliving, Linkcity’s student accommodation brand, and the affordable homes will be delivered in partnership with Hyde Group. Property consultant JLL was Linkcity’s commercial development and funding advisor and scheme design is by architect PRC.

The City of London Corporation is to launch a public consultation on its plans for three of its historic markets to be relocated in east London. Under the plans, Billingsgate, New Spitalfields and Smithfield markets are all set to move to the former Barking Reach power station site in Dagenham Dock. The City of London Corporation expects to submit an outline planning application this spring.

London mayor Sadiq Khan has launched guidance aimed at helping high streets to adapt, diversify and grow. The report, High streets and town centres - Adaptive strategies, looks at the challenges high streets face and potential responses, providing support for local groups and case studies of innovation and renewal. The report was delivered with support from the London Enterprise & Action Partnership by Greater London Authority, consultants Gort Scott, We Made That, Hatch Regeneris and Urban Shape and expert advisors.

Housebuilder Storey Homes has acquired 6 hectares of residential development land in Houghton Regis, Bedfordshire, where it plans to deliver 109 homes. The land is on the Bidwell West consortium site, which is expected to be developed with 1,850 homes in all. The SME housebuilder plans to deliver two, three, four and five bedroom homes on generous plots.

The V&A Dundee museum had a £75 million economic impact across Scotland in its first year, independent research has found. The museum was worth £21 million to the Dundee economy over the same period. These figures exceed earlier predictions of £10 million of impact in Dundee and £23 million across Scotland. The research, carried out by consultant Ekosgen, found higher visitor numbers and a higher proportion of overseas visitors on longer trips around Scotland had boosted the figures. It is estimated that 370 jobs have been created in Dundee by the museum’s opening.


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