Plans to develop around 300 new homes in Churchfields, Kidderminster have been boosted by funding from the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF).
The £2.7million funding is the result of a bid by Wyre Forest District Council, and will help to fund the Churchfields Urban Village Highway Infrastructure scheme.
Set to be delivered in partnership with Worcestershire County Council, the project aims to deliver a new urban village alongside a range of highways improvements to support the development. These include a significant enhancement to the A456 roundabout at Blackwell Street, a new T-junction providing access to Churchfields, and the creation of a new link road from the A456 to the development area.
Councillor Ian Hardiman, Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Regeneration, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the district council’s hard work with its partners has paid off and led to Government funding for a much needed piece of highway infrastructure which will help unlock the site and enable this important housing development to go forward.
“It is right that we should see brownfield sites such as Churchfields developed first. It will also bring about the urban village that the council first conceived in 2011 and it will be exciting to see it moving forward to completion.”
Councillor Chris Rogers, Cabinet Member for Housing, Health and Wellbeing said: “This important piece of infrastructure will enable the development of 300 new dwellings in a sustainable location close to the town centre and will help meet local housing need.
“We expect there to be new affordable dwellings provided as part of the scheme, so this will make an important contribution to meeting the needs of people on lower incomes. Alleviating traffic on Blackwell Street will also improve the air quality of the area and benefit the quality of life of those already living in the area.”
Councillor Dr. Ken Pollock, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Economy and Infrastructure at Worcestershire County Council, said: "Worcestershire has one of the fastest growing economies in the country. We are looking to support the creation of new homes as part of our plan to grow the local economy further.
"We are working alongside our colleagues at Wyre Forest District Council to deliver this ambitious scheme that will see around 300 new homes developed in a priority housing location. We are pleased that this funding from the HIF has moved our shared vision closer to reality."
The announcement about the Housing Infrastructure Fund has been made today (Thursday 1 February) by Housing Secretary Sajid Javid and Chancellor Philip Hammond at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government. The total funding confirmed for investment in local housing projects is 866m. The precise grant allocation from the Government will be decided as part of further work with MHCLG.
The masterplan for the Churchfields Urban Village was adopted by Wyre Forest District Council in 2011. Planning applications for both the highway works and the new homes are expected by the end of February. A pre-application consultation event was held in the Horsefair in December 2017 to share the plans with the local community. It is anticipated that works will commence on site in the summer of 2019.