West End £1.9m funding boost

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Proposals to inject new life into Morecambe’s West End will be discussed by Lancaster City Council’s Cabinet today (Tuesday, December 4).

Cabinet members will consider accepting £1.9m in external funding to deliver the Chatsworth Gardens project, bringing more than 100 empty homes back into use.

The long term project stalled as a result of the recession but work behind the scenes and negotiations with the Government’s Homes and Communities Agency has secured an offer of £1.9m for the scheme. In addition to bringing empty properties back into use, a key aim of the project is to turn former houses of multiple occupation into family homes.

The project targets properties in the Westminster Road, Albert Road, Balmoral Road and Chatsworth Road area.

Council owned properties on Westminster and Albert Road will be directly remodelled or refurbished by the council to create 25 terraced family homes (similar to recently remodelled properties on Bold Street) and sold for owner occupation.

The council will work with remaining property owners and occupiers to improve their homes through grant aid.

Council owned properties on Balmoral Road and Chatsworth Road will be sold to private developers under a building license agreement. The aim is to reduce density and provide larger units of both single houses and 2-3 bedroom flats.

Fifty five privately owned empty properties within the West End cluster area are to be targeted. Council officers will contact owners and provide assistance to bring properties back into use and offer limited grant assistance.