HCA takes Sarah Point kickstart finance to £10m

UK Land & Property will attempt to finish the twice-mothballed residential scheme on Great Ancoats Street in Manchester after securing loans from the Homes & Communities Agency and Close Brothers.

The 166-unit scheme will now be taken forward by a special purpose development vehicle, Nuovo Apartments, which is a joint venture between UK Land & Property and Sir Robert McAlpine.

The HCA has invested £6m into this project via a loan from the Get Britain Building programme. This is in addition to £4m which the agency previously invested into the scheme in August 2010. Work stalled in 2008 on Bashar Issa's development. UK Land & Property acquired the site, renaming it Nuovo, following Issa's fall into bankruptcy and work resumed for a while before stopping again as more funding was required for construction.

The loan finance from Close Brothers is its first significant investment in the north since 2008.

Deborah McLaughlin, executive director for the HCA in the North West, said: "It is great that Sarah Point Nuovo has started on site. It's an extremely important scheme for Ancoats and a prominent sign of the activity in the city fringe which has seen over 500 homes start on site with Get Britain Building funding within the last couple of months.

"Ancoats is really taking off, with the Halle's new permanent rehearsal home in the former St Peter's church and the New Islington Free school opening in September 2013."

Simon Parker, director of UKLP, said: "We expect the 40 low cost home ownership units, which will be delivered with Adactus Housing, to be completed in the summer next year, and the remaining 126 high quality open market for sale apartments to be ready for occupation in the autumn of 2014. We are already talking to occupiers for the commercial space on Great Ancoats Street."

Richard Hemmings, manager from Close Brothers, said: "We are extremely pleased to be working with UK Land & Property and Sir Robert McAlpine on this project. Funding important schemes like Sarah Point Nuovo alongside the HCA is an excellent way of levering private sector funding into regeneration schemes, and builds on the confidence private sector investors and developers have already shown in this part of the city."

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