THOUSANDS of new affordable and environmentally-friendly homes could be built in Warwickshire, if a new pilot working arrangement between Warwickshire County Council (WCC) and Homes England is successful.
The council is the first local authority in the country to test the potential for a working agreement with Homes England – a non-departmental public body set up to build more homes more quickly, sponsored by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.
WCC says the collaboration means it will be able to draw on Homes England’s expertise, influence and resources to deliver more quality homes faster, and boost the local economy.
A council spokesperson said: “If the pilot is successful, Homes England could be a significant driving force, alongside the council, in delivering regeneration plans across Warwickshire.”
The aims of the collaboration include unlocking major regeneration schemes and generating thousands of jobs, delivering high-quality and sustainable developments, delivering affordable and market-price homes, ensuring housing is supported by suitable employment opportunities, and ensuring infrastructure is provided at the appropriate time to ensure communities can grow.
WCC’s deputy leader and spokesman for finance and property Coun Peter Butlin said: “This exciting pilot project with Homes England is an important milestone for the County Council’s economic recovery plan.
“It’s vital for us to work with partners and other organisations, both local and national, to deliver better outcomes for our residents and businesses.
“If successful, this project will not only provide new and better homes, but will also be a huge boost to the local economy with a wide range of jobs, including apprenticeships, being created.”
In October, the council agreed the business case for a Warwickshire Property and Development company (WPDC) to oversee the delivery of new home building projects.
WPDC will be considered again by WCC’s Cabinet on January 28, when the business plan of development sites will be up for approval.