With a combined £50 Mn secured from various sources, Wirral residents can look forward to a host of developments as projects begin to take shape on initiatives funded by up to half of the total investment budget.
The nine projects
Following public consultation, the following ten projects were selected as those likely to result in the largest improvement to the area:
- The Transport Shed: – a transport-themed attraction to be run by National Museums Liverpool will be located within Dock Branch Park.
- Education Engagement Project: – seven buildings are set to be improved and form what the council has termed a “hub and spoke network of service delivery bringing together education, advice, guidance, and specialist services,” to be led by Wirral Metropolitan College.
- Waterfront Animation and Creativity Project: – investment in Eureka! Science + Discovery, Woodside and Birkenhead Priory, including public realm improvements to Hamilton Square.
- Sustainability Central: – focused on refurbishing and retrofitting a building within the Wirral Waters Enterprise Zone and surrounding outdoor area, the project will create a space to host events and workshops on sustainability.
- EXPO Village: – acting as a “three-year ‘laboratory’ for testing homes of the future”, according to the council, this project aims to highlight innovative ways to construct homes before becoming open market and affordable housing after that time.
- Wellbeing and Opportunity Hub: – Charity Door will provide help and services to those in need of mental health and wellbeing support.
- Future Yard Music Skills Venue: – the second and third phases of the live music venue project which opened its first phase in autumn 2019 will be funded – including a 6,800 sq ft music-specific project space and skills development infrastructure.
- StartYard: – focusing on reusing a former industrial garage building owned by Microzine Creative this project aims to create a creative hub in Birkenhead’s Cammell Laird waterfront area.
- The Argyle Street Creative Hub: – dedicated to acquiring and redeveloping a vacant property, the project – operated by Make CIC – will turn it into a cultural and community creative space.
Councillor Tony Jones, the chair of Wirral Council’s Economy, Regeneration & Development Committee commented:
While the exact allocation of funds will depend on the outcome of pitches to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Wirral residents will be pleased that work is either set to begin soon or is already in progress.
What this means for Wirral landlords
Part of what makes an area an excellent investment opportunity is the local amenities – including retail, transport and the like. While Wirral has a lot to offer residents, areas such as Birkenhead have been historically underfunded. Large developments of this nature are what has been needed to help overcome issues in the area and should help to improve the wellbeing of residents.
Not only do projects like this, if completed successfully, have a lasting impact on the environment of an area, they are also great for both property prices and attractiveness to potential tenants. While the construction of new homes has been a top priority, there has been a historic imbalance between supply and demand in the area and such projects are likely to fall short of satisfying the likely increase during their construction.
For that reason, Wirral landlords can expect to see property values continue to grow at above the national average over the coming 2-3 years, allowing landlords to potentially restructure debt and expand their investment.
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