£5.5 million boost to Northern Gateway project announced

Colchester Northern Gateway project is set to receive a £5.5 million boost from the government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund.

The £2.3 billion fund was setup in July 2017 by the then Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid.

Will Quince (Con), MP for Colchester said in a statement: “This is great news for Colchester. I am delighted to have played a part in securing this funding which will help provide the infrastructure our town needs.

“This is a great example of both local and central government working together and I am proud to have worked with them to deliver this funding for Colchester.”

Phase one of the Northern Gateway project last month received final planning permission by Colchester planners to allow permission for a hotel, cinema and restaurants to be built.

Today’s funding announcement of £5.5 million funding investment will provide a 500m-long pedestrian-priority boulevard and deliver key highway improvements connecting the site to the existing roads network.

The Axial Way site comprises of major plans to provide up to 560 new homes, including care facilities for older people, and new commercial sites and employment opportunities for Colchester.

Speaking on behalf of Colchester Council, Cllr Annie Feltham (Lib), Portfolio Holder for Commercial Services, said: “I am absolutely delighted that we have secured such a substantial sum to support our investment in vital new infrastructure for the Colchester Northern Gateway development.

“This is an extremely exciting project that Colchester can be proud of and will bring numerous tangible benefits to the Borough including much-needed new housing and employment opportunities.

“This additional funding is recognition by the Government that Colchester is continuing to build on its reputation as a major centre for job creation and as a magnet for growth within the region.”

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond (Con), said: “Today marks the first step of the multi-billion pound investment we announced at the Budget to help build the homes our country needs.

“This support will help us meet our ambitious plan of building 300,000 new homes each year and ensure we have enough housing in areas which need it most.”

Bids for the funding were awarded to local authorities on a highly competitive basis, providing grant funding for new infrastructure that will unlock new homes in the areas of greatest housing demand.

The new investment through the Housing Infrastructure Fund was launched with aims to solve development stagnation problems.  It opened for bids from local authorities across England to come forward with proposals to help get homes built faster.

Funding will also be available to help build new schools, healthcare centres and digital infrastructure to accommodate growing communities and alleviate pressure on public services.

The Housing Infrastructure Fund is a government capital grant programme of up to £2.3 billion, which will help to deliver up to 100,000 new homes in England.