The Northern Gateway project is one of the largest programmes of work in the UK and the biggest in Manchester since the regeneration of East Manchester following the Commonwealth Games in 2002.
It stretches northwards from the city centre – from NOMA and New Cross, through the Irk Valley to Collyhurst – and will be the largest contributor to the city’s residential growth strategy with the potential to provide 15,000 new homes to help accommodate a growing population.
The Collyhurst community – a key area for housing investment – will be one of the first areas to benefit with a new affordability zone created as a focus for mixed-type affordable homes, including new council-owned social housing and a range of accessible housing products for sale and affordable rents.
The ambition is to create vibrant and distinct linked neighbourhoods with good connectivity to employment opportunities.
These neighbourhoods will be linked with green spaces through the Lower Irk Valley and place making – through city river parks and using existing architectural heritage, including railway viaducts – will help create the different characters of each emerging neighbourhood.
As the communities grow, local facilities will also be developed to service the planned population growth with schools, sports and leisure provision and medical services.
The Northern Gateway project is a joint venture between Manchester City Council and property developer Far East Consortium (FEC) and Coun Bernard Priest, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “We have a once in a lifetime opportunity in the Northern Gateway to improve and develop a huge swathe of unused land within walking distance of the city centre and employment opportunities.
“In doing so we will be able to meet the modern housing needs of Manchester and help build a mix of housing types and tenures to provide a true housing choice for Manchester people – and help meet a huge demand for quality homes in the city over the coming decade.
“We are already in the process of securing additional grant funding to push forward with the first phase focused on Collyhurst – to build new social homes and other affordable housing products – and we will consult with residents around the proposals at our earliest opportunity.”
Gavin Taylor, regional general manager of FEC, said: “With the Irk river valley acting as the catalyst for change, Northern Gateway will unlock the development potential of 350 acres by creating vibrant communities of family homes, parks, schools, healthcare and other public facilities, all linked by new public transport hubs”.
“Alongside the investment by FEC and the council, Northern Gateway offers an unrivalled opportunity for everyone with interests in north Manchester to contribute to its transformation.
“Through our partnership with the city council we are committed to Collyhurst and the delivery of a mix of homes that will meet the needs of existing and new residents, including affordable housing and properties for market sale”.
A draft regeneration framework and masterplan for the Northern Gateway will be brought to Manchester City Council’s Executive committee in June before the start of a full public consultation .