Work has officially started on Bath’s highly anticipated housing development at Mulberry Park, following a visit from Housing and Planning Minister Brandon Lewis MP on Thursday 31st March.
The MP visited for the ground-breaking ceremony at the former Ministry of Defence (MoD) site near Foxhill.
Curo has outline planning permission at Mulberry Park for up to 700 homes, a new primary school, nursery, community facilities and employment space.
Detailed planning permission has also been granted for the first 275 new homes at Mulberry Park.
Of these homes 30% will be affordable including homes for social rent and shared ownership.
Last year the Government designated Mulberry Park as a Housing Zone (one of nineteen across the UK).
This zone covers the former MoD site and the proposed regeneration of the Foxhill estate and attracted over £300,000 of extra funding from central government designed to accelerate the delivery of housing.
Mr Lewis was joined at the ground-breaking ceremony by Victor da Cunha, Chief Executive of Curo, Bath’s MP Ben Howlett and B&NES Cabinet Member for Homes & Planning Liz Richardson.
During his visit Mr Lewis was able to take a tour of the site and heard about the vision Curo has for the area.
Mr da Cunha said: “After three years of consultations and discussions with local people and Bath & North East Somerset Council, it’s exciting to see work finally start on the Mulberry Park development.
“When Curo bought the former MoD site in 2013 we had a vision not just for the vacant land but the wider Foxhill community.
“We did not want to see a private developer come in and build a separate community. At Curo we want all local people to share the social and economic benefits of the regeneration.
“The new housing, school and community facilities at Mulberry Park, combined with our ambitions to regenerate part of the existing Foxhill estate, will enable us to provide quality homes that meet people’s needs now and in the future.
“The scheme will also help create an integrated community with improved transport and infrastructure.”
The project, which will deliver much-needed housing for the city and help Bath & North East Somerset Council achieve its target of 13,000 new homes by 2029, is a true partnership between Curo, B&NES, the Government and the local community, supported by the Homes and Communities Agency.
Bath’s MP Ben Howlett said: “It was a pleasure to see the Minister break the ground at Mulberry Park today. This is a transformational project for the area.
“Not only will it provide a substantial number of affordable homes it will also regenerate the area with new community facilities and improvements to the local infrastructure.
“We all know that Bath is one of the least affordable cities in the UK to buy a house. By building more affordable homes we will see more families get that first step on to the housing ladder.
“The visit was a great celebration of Curo’s excellent work in redeveloping the area and it should be a great boost for their work in developing plans for the rest of Foxhill.”