The first phase of The Guinness Partnership’s Points Cross housing scheme is now on site and will build more than 300 new, sustainable homes in the Leeds South Bank area –100 per cent of which will be affordable, as well as supporting the generation of extra jobs, skills, and training opportunities for young people.
The wider scheme will deliver 928 affordable and sustainable homes in total, in one of Leeds key regeneration areas. It will also see improvements to green spaces in the area and new public walking and cycle routes, as well as commercial space for uses such as cafés and gyms.
The Points Cross scheme is being constructed on what was previously the Arnold Clark car dealership and is the first of its kind in West Yorkshire funded by the government’s Brownfield Housing Fund — a programme designed to build more homes by unlocking and redeveloping brownfield land.
In July 2020, as a result of the devolution deal, West Yorkshire Combined Authority was allocated up to £67m funding from the programme. The fund will help to build between 4500 to 6000 new homes across West Yorkshire over the next four years.
Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, joined The Guinness Partnership and other partners, as well as Coun Helen Hayden from Leeds City Council, at the site last week to see the progress of building work.
Ms Brabin said: “Schemes like this one are absolutely vital to address the housing shortage across West Yorkshire and deliver affordable, sustainable and well-connected housing options that meet the needs of all of our communities. Everyone deserves a good, secure home and we will continue to deliver on our pledge to develop brownfield land across the region, helping to regenerate areas like Holbeck and shaping an economy that works for all.
“Not only will the Points Cross scheme provide high-quality homes, but the project also offers students across the region the opportunity to gain skilled apprenticeships and support their progress into good job opportunities in engineering and construction. The pandemic has hit our young people especially hard, so we are really proud to be funding this project in partnership with Homes England and creating vital opportunities for students.”
The Points Cross development will bring skills training and apprenticeships to young people across the city, with students at Leeds College of Building, Leeds City College, Ruth Gorse Academy, and the University Technical College all benefitting from being adjacent to the scheme, having access to a live building project, learning directly from industry professionals and being able to witness key construction stages.
Neil Armstrong, chair and chief Executive, of United Living Group, which is the project's construction partner, said: “We are delighted to be working with The Guinness Partnership to create much needed affordable homes in this area of Leeds. Our goal is to create thriving communities where people feel safe and are proud to live.
“Working closely with Leeds City College, The Leeds College of Building and The Ruth Gorse Academy, we have provided educational and careers workshops for a wide range of learners, ranging from construction to catering, and we are excited to see the growth and further benefits to these young people as the project develops”.
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