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North West Development Agency drives regeneration of Ancoats


Peter Skelton

A new drive to attract businesses and developers into Ancoats has been initiated by the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA). It will explore opportunities to rent or sell existing buildings and redevelop cleared sites not already linked to a developer.

Worth over £8m, we will be marketing the vacant land and properties, including projects already in the pipeline, working with the NWDA and urban regeneration company, New East Manchester.

£400m regeneration of Ancoats

Redevelopments will be high quality in line with the vision for the £400 million regeneration of Ancoats. Paul Lakin, Director of Land and Property at the NWDA, said: “Ancoats is a priority for the NWDA. We have already invested £71m and the private sector has committed £220m so far.

“We need to maintain momentum in Ancoats and LSH will help attract high quality developments and private sector investment. We already have a significant number of residents and businesses in the regeneration area. Over the next few years, we need to attract greater life and revenue into the area.”

Birthplace of the industrial revolution

As the birthplace of the industrial revolution, Ancoats has a unique heritage. It has been recognised through designation as a Conservation Area. The regeneration has been led by partners including the NWDA, New East Manchester and Manchester City Council.

Work will initially focus on letting empty properties to increase footfall, which will stimulate the area’s vitality and make it more attractive to the private sector.

Pro-active disposal strategy

Peter Skelton, Head of our office in Manchester, said:  “We are optimistic about the future prospects for the area. With a pro-active disposal strategy and careful exploration of emerging opportunities, we can help improve the overall performance and appeal of the area.”

Significant progress has already been made with sites acquired and primed for redevelopment. Some have completed with many new businesses and residents in place. However, as a result of the global economic downturn, some projects have stalled prompting the NWDA to respond with environmental and security improvements to keep up momentum. As a result, seven derelict sites across the Conservation Area have been cleared and resurfaced with green slate chippings over the last few months.

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