Property investment companies are pushing Manchester and Salford as prime real estate that will provide huge returns for cash rich, usually foreign, investors....
"Property developers are looking to capitalize on the gold rush" states Alliance Investments, which has the Ordsall Riverside block, re-named Downtown Manchester, where the price of a one bed apartment 'starts' from £185,000.
Just up Ordsall Lane from this development are plans for two riverside schemes encompassing a total of 751 apartments and townhouses.
The first scheme, opposite Quay 5, is being proposed by Fortis Developments Ltd, for 368 apartments and eight townhouses in blocks between five and nine storeys high.
Here, there will be only one unit of affordable housing, thanks to official Salford City Council policy which states that no affordable housing is required for apartment complexes in Ordsall.
"In accordance with the Planning Obligations SPD, education and affordable housing contributions are not applied to the apartments within the scheme" states the Council report to be discussed by planning panel councillors next week.
Fortis will supply just one affordable property, based on 10% of the eight properties classed as townhouses within the development. And will supply no affordable flats based on the other 368 unaffordable apartments.
Next door to this development, on Fairbrother Street, NW Build is proposing to erect 375 properties in four blocks between five and nine storeys high. Here there will be 366 apartments and nine townhouses. Again the developer does not need to provide a percentage of affordable housing based on the apartments, only on the townhouses (one), again in line with official Salford Council policy.
So that's two affordable properties out of 751 apartments and townhouses, as the 'investor gold rush' intensifies.
In its Affordable Housing and Planning Obligations Statement, NW Build, via its consultants, The Planning Studio, already had its viability get-out statement ready, if needed...
"There are numerous examples of schemes granted planning permission by local authorities that provide no or a significantly reduced provision of affordable housing and planning obligation contributions" it states "This non/reduced provision has often been viewed as necessary to enable the deliverability of the schemes and to promote the regeneration of sites and the wider area.
"Indeed, within Salford, and in the Ordsall Lane area in particular, we are aware of numerous similar high rise residential led schemes that have not provided affordable housing or S106 contributions" it adds.
In the event, the two developers agreed to pay £711,546.24 and £718,004.02 respectively, for a new bus service between Salford Quays and Manchester City Centre, via Ordsall Lane; a Parking Permit scheme and open space and education (not disclosed).
This is a lot cheaper for the developers than having to provide a minimum of 75 affordable properties, had Salford Council not changed its planning policies a few years ago.
Through cock-eyed Salford Council planning policy, the Government's National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and consultants cashing in on helping developers avoid fees and affordable housing, Salford has lost an estimated 1,000 affordable properties and over £42million in planning fees over the last three years alone...
See previous Salford Star article: 40,000 People Sign 38 Degrees Petition to Make Developers Be Transparent – click here
Sign the Salford petition – click here