Two pioneering projects which could improve public services, stimulate economic growth and free-up land for the wider regeneration of key areas have received government backing.
The Greater Brighton One Public Estate programme has been given an additional £125,000 of funding to kickstart multimillion pound schemes to create scores of homes, as well as new employment space for businesses and hundreds of workers.
The money will now be used to draw up further plans to bring these projects forward with the ultimate aim of unlocking future development worth millions of pounds to the local economy.
Greater Brighton leaders welcomed the national investment, claiming it showed that the partnership of councils, business and academia was paying dividends across the City Region.
The projects to receive the money are the Hove Station Quarter (£70,000) and the North Street Quarter (NSQ) Health Hub in Lewes (£55,000).
Funds will be used to work with public and private partners, as well as local residents, to draw up detailed studies into both projects.
Councillor Andy Smith, chairman of the Greater Brighton Economic Board (GBEB) and leader of Lewes District Council, said: “I’m delighted that we have brought yet further investment into the City Region.
“Greater Brighton is all about working together to bring benefits to the greater good, something which is epitomised by the whole One Public Estate idea.
“Both of these schemes have the potential of maximising public resources while delivering major benefits to local communities.
“It really is a win-win for everyone and I’m looking forward to seeing both progress through this next stage.”
The new funding has been allocated from the One Public Estate (OPE) programme, run in partnership by the Cabinet Office and Local Government Association.
This initiative gives partnerships such as Greater Brighton the support and funding to help them to use publicly-owned land and buildings more efficiently, benefiting communities across the country.
It was launched in 2013 and Greater Brighton signed-up to join in July 2016.
Hove Station Quarter will see Brighton & Hove City Council working with a range of landowners and local community groups to develop a masterplan for the redevelopment of the Conway Street Industrial Estate site. The land is earmarked for a vibrant, mixed-use high density redevelopment including a minimum of 12,000sqm of office space and 200 residential units.
The North Street Quarter Health Hub in Lewes plans to provide modern facilities for a range of health providers on one site. It will also include a pharmacy, dental practice, extra care housing, community space, nursery and office space. More than 500sqm of town centre premises will then be released for housing or commercial use. It is part of the wider North Street Quarter mixed-use redevelopment, which will deliver 416 new homes, 13,000sqm of commercial floor space and 475 new jobs.
They join seven other projects in the Greater Brighton OPE programme, which are: Springman House, Lewes; Worthing Civic Centre; Brighton General Hospital; Dyke Road Barracks, Brighton; Moulsecoomb Neighbourhood Hub, Brighton; Preston Barracks, Brighton; Preston Circus Fire Station.
Caroline Nokes, the Minister for Government Resilience and Efficiency, said: “When I launched this application round in August I hoped that new funding and the obvious benefits of the programme would grab the attention of councils and boost the numbers getting involved.
“I’m delighted to see that we now have over 90% of councils on board, up from around three quarters previously.
“People in many more communities will feel the benefits of new housing, better public services and efficiency as a result.”