Brunswick PFI wins credit approval

The Homes & Communities Agency has approved a £113m private finance initiative plan to build 500 homes and refurbish 650 in Brunswick, Manchester.

The consent means the council can now consider the tenders of the competing project consortia who will be responsible for delivering the regeneration plan. The council will evaluate the final bids from both Fern and Solutions 4 Brunswick, before selecting the preferred bidder later this year.

Fern consists of Harvest Housing Group and Gleeson. Solutions 4 Brunswick is made up of Contour Housing, Galliford Try and Mears.

The 25-year regeneration project was postponed for several years during the recession while fresh finance was sought. The new plan saves £4.9m on the original model.

The new homes will be built for rent or buy to 'an improved neighbourhood design' that includes new road layouts and open spaces. In addition, a new retail area will provide shops and amenities, along with a new neighbourhood office and a 60-bed sheltered accommodation facility.

Cllr Jim Battle, deputy leader of Manchester City Council, said: "This announcement takes us a step closer to a new Brunswick, and although we still face a number of hurdles, this is a welcome announcement that gives some light at the end of the tunnel for residents who have waited years for these plans.

"We have a fantastic community here that will no doubt continue to prosper as the regeneration plans come to fruition. Being so close to the city centre, coupled with the promise of new homes and an improved neighbourhood layout, I can see a bright future for Brunswick."

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Hope its not Gleeson. I find their commitment to quality architecture and design outside of the limited demands of the PFI contracts is lamentable. You only have to look at the mess they’ve created in Beswick to see what they’re capable of when left to their own devices. Everything looks like its been cut to the bone to maintain their margins.

By PFI watch

Who are the architects? PRP and MBLA? One can only guess by looking at the respective newletters..why are architects never mentioned in the PFI news?

By zootsuit

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