New development could create homes close to Chester

A community building project in Ellesmere Port has the potential to create thousands of new houses in the area.

The plans for the construction of the new public services hub, which will be linked to the local borough council’s offices in Civic Way, is currently awaiting approval, but could be completed by as early as 2018.

The £20m development is aimed at renewing the local community and improving the capabilities of the authority’s services, but it could also see increased investment in the Cheshire town. It has been predicted that the new civic hub, and the economic benefits that it will bring, could fuel the construction of about 2,000 new dwellings in the area.

While no date as of yet has been set for the construction work to begin, it might not be too long following approval for the process to start. Already, around £8m has been secured by the council from the Government to help lay the foundations. Chester businesses are also likely to see benefits from this scheme, which could renew investment in the wider area.

By bringing several public sector agencies together under one roof, it is hoped that it will help the borough to be able to deliver on its aims of improving community services.

Councillor Stuart Parker, the authority’s economy chief, added that by working in partnership, the council and its seven public sector partners will be able to deliver greater results than if they were each operating independently. This, in turn, will help to cut back on related expenses, saving the area money.

Having the various agency partners together in one place will also free up land in Ellesmere Port for redevelopment, which could help with the housebuilding initiative or be turned over to commercial enterprises.

Nicole Meardon, a councillor for the Sutton ward, added that while the investment is great news for the area, any consultation with residents would have to be “thorough and meaningful”.