Sandwell set to lead the way in new government housing scheme

construction-4-1515003-640x480The Housing Zones scheme is a government initiative that will see councils around the country working in partnership with private developers to deliver thousands of new homes on brownfield land.

Sandwell has been selected as one of six zones in the UK to pioneer this scheme, which is designed to address the country’s housing shortfall.

Housing Minister Gavin Barwell has said that councils can bid for a share of an £18m fund to help overcome planning issues that may delay and prevent builders from getting on site and starting work quickly.

The funding is intended to help accelerate the construction of up to 800,000 new homes and infrastructure across large sites in England.

The six new Housing Zones are part of a wider package of measures to increase the number of homes being built across the country. The six new zones are:

•        Sandwell Housing Zone, Bescot and Friar Park
•        Pennine-Lancashire Housing Zone, with sites in Blackburn and Burnley
•        Wirral Waters Housing Zone, Merseyside

  • Sheffield Housing Zone, South Yorkshire
    •        North East Lincolnshire Urban Housing Zone, with sites in Grimsby and Cleethorpes
    •        Hoyland-Wombwell Strategic Housing Zone, Barnsley, South Yorkshire.

Other measures being put in place include the provision of new affordable starter homes – councils will be required to guarantee the delivery of starter homes on all reasonably-sized new development sites, and to promote the delivery of starter homes in their area – and planning reforms to support small builders.

Developers will also be able to apply for funding from the Home Building Fund, which is making £3bn available to house builders.

If any business opportunities arise from the scheme in Sandwell we’ll be sure to publicise them on here, so keep checking for updates.