One of my top priorities for Cheadle, Stockport and the Greater Manchester region is to speak out for every possible bit of investment which can be put to use locally and at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse.
So I was extremely pleased to recently meet with the Local Government Minister, Sajid Javid, and discuss the announcement of Government funding worth up to £68.25 million for projects in our region.
As a part of this generous package the Government has given the green light for a key Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) bid from Stockport Council, which includes a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) scheme linked to the SEMMMS Road, to progress to the final stage for approval.
As we await the revised Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, due to be published in June, it is crucial that we build the homes we need in the right places to protect the green belt. I therefore welcome the £50 million that will be provided to support the regeneration of brownfield land in meeting our housing needs. This funding will provide at least 4,200 homes and bring new life to town and village centres across the region. My support for a ‘brownfield first’ policy is well documented, and I hope to see more developments like this.
Stockport Council is a prime example of this new drive. Their successful bid into the HIF will mean our Borough receives £8.5 million towards projects which will help bring over 500 new homes to previously underused areas of the town centre.
Up to £8 million will also be provided to build the Greater Manchester Place Team, which will enable Councils to work with the Government more closely to deliver high quality homes at a faster pace.
However as is often rightly stated, new homes require new and better infrastructure too. Final approval of the £32 million bid for the BRT scheme will enable over 3,000 homes to be built, while at the same time boost local transport infrastructure and tackle poor air quality, as well as easing congestion on our roads.
It’s vital our local councils work with Government to commit to attract funding to build new homes and infrastructure. I will always bang the drum for more investment in our region, and will continue to work with anyone and everyone to see even more support in the future.