Next stage of the Masterplan is being discussed next week…….hasn’t anyone told you?

The meeting of the Housing and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee tales place next Wednesday, 21st January, 2015 at 7.30 p.m. and this represents the next stage of the regeneration. This covers a few topics such as the purchasing of freeholds and leaseholds, as well as how social renters might be impacted.

At this stage the items on the Council Committee’s website are Agenda items.

To see each of the documents, click on the following bullet points;

@ Agenda Items

@ Alton Area Masterplan Update, SW15 (Roehampton and Putney Heath) (Paper No. 15-7)

@ Appendix 1 – The objectives identified for the Alton area regeneration

@ Appendix 2 – Delivery Approach Assessment

@ Appendix 3 – properties were identified as part of the Masterplan consultation

process as being proposed to be replaced with new homes

@ Appendix 4 – Leaseholder and Freeholder Information Booklet

If it assists, we’ve selected some paragraphs which may, or may not, be of interest. Note the concerns mentioned by those impacted. For instance, if you were offered the choice to move from your home into a shiny new apartment with no idea of the likely costs, wouldn’t you be a bit hesitant in taking up the offer?

Alton Area Masterplan Update, SW15 (Roehampton and Putney Heath) (Paper No. 15-7)

Paragraph Comment
5 The decisions included will signal real intent from the Council to proceed with the programme and this message should be signalled publicly following the decisions.
9 The Council approved the Alton area Masterplan in October 2014 (Paper No. 14-447). This represented the culmination of an 18 month Masterplanning process that Alton area masterplan update included two periods of extensive consultation with the local community and other stakeholders, resulting in a vision for how the Alton area may change and develop over the coming years.
35 Further to this, since the proposals are now moving closer to implementation, it is considered reasonable that in these circumstances the Council should now offer to purchase these properties on the terms outlined in the resident commitments as if the Council were effectively moving to designate areas for development.
47 Particular issues raised by residents include: whether there will be an impact on rent levels for tenants, service charge levels for resident Alton area Masterplan owners who buy back into the scheme and impact on Council tax for resident owners who buy back into the scheme.
48 Certainly in relation to rents the commitment is a clear one and that is that social renters will be rehoused on the social rents that they are being charged at the time of rehousing depending of course on a similar size of property being offered etc.
62 There are a number of interests in properties within the Alton regeneration area that need to be acquired before the scheme can progress. These will be purchased firstly through voluntary buy backs but may require the use of CPO powers. Based on the estimate of likely purchases concluded through voluntary buy backs it is now proposed to establish significant HRA capital budgets of £6.5 million per annum in both 2015/16 and 2016/17 in relation to this scheme for which positive budget variations are recommended for approval with any future budget requirements approved as part of the annual HRA capital bids process reported in January each year.

Appendix 1

The Council wishes to fund all social housing from its HRA, to own this housing, and to have it delivered in discrete, manageable blocks.
The Council wishes to own and manage all replacement leaseholder and intermediate housing stock. There needs to be further discussion as to whether these are in discrete blocks or provided within social rent blocks.
The Council intends to ensure that management of public realm and the neighbourhood in general is tenure neutral with no clear designation between private owned and Council owned property and a high standard maintained throughout. Options must be able to accommodate realistic solutions to funding long term upkeep of public realm, including the re-modelled Alton Park and village green, that do not result in unsustainable charges to affordable housing residents
The Council aspire to higher levels of private/intermediate housing from a housing needs/place-making perspective. This may impact on the form of housing provided in particular localities in the regeneration area. The Council would wish to explore options in some parts of the regeneration area to provide family friendly housing and environments for low and middle income households.
The Council wish to move from a freehold sale approach to a leasehold approach with a ground rent income and commercial rents to the General Fund
The regeneration would need to make provision for the replacement of a significant number of lost community assets including a doctor’s surgery, library, youth club, housing office etc.). Replacement would be on the basis of existing users (e.g. Methodist Church long leaseholder) agreeing terms in respect to the sale of their land
The masterplan currently includes the provision of 400 student bedrooms in the Danebury Centre and it is intended that the Roehampton University or a private student housing company will manage these units.
The masterplan area predominantly comprises land owned by the Council but land ownership complications concerning the Mount Clare site, currently owned by the Southlands Trust and managed by the local Methodists, will need consideration. Proposals for Mount Clare have been proposed and a memorandum of understanding has been drafted between the Council, the Southlands Trust and Roehampton University
Private Rented Sector properties on the Alton Area are of a different nature to PRS on the Winstanley and York Road. This is due to the high rental yield levels and the growing Roehampton University student population. The Council is considering the social and legal ramifications of covenanting the affordable housing bought by resident leaseholders currently living in the Alton area that will be developed through the regeneration programme, as well as possibly the private sale accommodation. This is intended to ensure that the homes cannot be used, either by the initial owner or future owners, as a buy to let investment.

Remember

Our Councillor Sue McKinney sits on this Committee, so please ask her your questions……quickly!

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns you may have.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Peter Carpenter – pcarpenter@wandsworth.gov.uk

Jeremy Ambache – JAmbache@wandsworth.gov.uk

Sue McKinney – SMcKinney@wandsworth.gov.uk

Or email the Wandsworth Council team managing the ‘regeneration’

Team Roehampton – Roehampton@wandsworth.gov.uk

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