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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Joseph Timan

Affordable homes to be built in north Manchester as council sells land

Dozens of new homes are set to be built in north Manchester as part of a council plan to sell land on the cheap in return for affordable housing. The 45 homes to be built in Charlestown and Harpurhey are the first of 500 planned.

The Guinness Partnership has submitted plans to build 38 two-storey houses on an empty plot of land off White Moss Road and Woodmere Drive in the Charlestown area. The affordable housing provider has also applied to build seven properties between Palgrave Avenue and Queens Road in Harpurhey.

It comes after Manchester council agreed to sell 27 sites across the city where hundreds of new low carbon and affordable homes would be built. These council-owned plots predominantly in North and East Manchester - all of which have been developed before - are set to accommodate 378 homes.

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Seven housing providers have agreed to build affordable homes on these sites with The Guinness Partnership submitting the first two planning applications. More sites are set to be sold by the council as part of the Project 500 initiative.

Labour councillor Gavin White, who is the executive member for housing and development at Manchester council, said: "Project 500 is about creating opportunities for our housing partners to deliver new high quality, low carbon housing on council-owned land – and increase the number of genuinely affordable homes available to our residents.

"The first phase of Project 500 homes was only announced in November last year, so it’s brilliant to welcome the first planning application submissions through Guinness, which underline our commitment to delivering new affordable homes in our communities - and with a clear ambition to build the homes our residents need quickly."

Land at White Moss Road and Woodmere Drive in Charlestown where The Guinness Partnership plans to build 38 homes (Google)

The project aims to deliver 500 new low carbon affordable homes on council-owned land that is difficult to develop due to the small scale of the schemes. The local authority will sell the land on the cheap - or in some cases hand it over for free - on the grounds that it will be used to build affordable housing.

More than half of the new homes would be available for Manchester Living Rent which will be capped at the local housing benefit level, while the rest will also be social or affordable housing including some Rent to Buy schemes. All of the two and three-bedroom houses planned by The Guinness Partnership - including the two in Harpurhey and Charlestown - would all be social housing.

Angela Garrard, who is the development director for the North at The Guinness Partnership, said: "Project 500 is a Manchester City Council-led scheme to deliver new homes on brownfield infill sites around the city region. The Guinness Partnership are delighted to have the opportunity to work as a delivery partner with the council, together with Homes England, which is providing grant funding through its Strategic Partnership programme to deliver much-needed affordable homes.

"The sites to be acquired by Guinness will deliver up to 77 new family homes for Social Rent for local households. We have recently submitted planning applications to enable development to take place, and look forward to receiving feedback on our proposals in order to commit the available grant funding before the end of March 2023."

The planning applications can be viewed on the Manchester council website.

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