Tameside designates Ashton as Mayoral Development Zone
The council hopes the move will provide a strategic, joined-up approach to helping the town realise its potential as an innovation hub.
Ashton Mayoral Development Zone “will significantly raise the profile of Ashton and Tameside, helping to position the opportunities that exist for future funding, investment and Greater Manchester support”, according to the council.
What is Ashton Mayoral Development Zone?
Signed off by Tameside Council on Wednesday, the ADZ encompasses St Petersfield, Ashton Moss, and Ashton Town Centre, three areas earmarked for transformational change over the coming years.
A steering group comprising Cllr Brenda Warrington, leader of Tameside Council, Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and representatives from Homes England, and Transport for Greater Manchester will meet quarterly to discuss plans for Ashton.
The mayoral development zone will be a “non-statutory entity that provides overarching strategic direction for this area and seeks to further refine the ambition and delivery challenges”, according to a report to Tameside’s executive.
It is hoped that the formation of the initiative will build on work that has already taken place across Ashton, including the creation of the new Ashton Interchange – part of the £60m Vision Tameside programme – and the conversion of Ashton Old Baths into a digital incubator centre.
A healthy pipeline
As well as work that has already taken place, Tameside has built a healthy pipeline of projects within the Ashton Mayoral Development Zone.
Tameside Council was awarded almost £20m from the government’s Levelling Up Fund last year to revamp Ashton town centre, while Ashton Moss is earmarked for a 1.7m sq ft employment site under the Places for Everyone joint plan.
In St Petersfield, the council has signed off a masterplan – drawn up by LDA Design, CBRE, Curtins, Partisan and Todd Architects – that could see a £100m mixed-use scheme delivered.
The council is now actively seeking a development partner for the project, which could feature 61 new homes, 193,000 sq ft of commercial space, and a 50,000 sq ft hotel.
In addition, the council is also finalising a memorandum of understanding with the owners of the Arcades and Ladysmith shopping centres to explore the scope for the redevelopment of the two town centre complexes.
The project could see the delivery of 470 new homes, 91,000 sq ft of commercial space, a new health and wellbeing hub, and 90,000 sq ft of retained retail space.