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EXECUTIVE BOARD - Middlesbrough Council.rtf

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					                      EXECUTIVE BOARD
                        DATE: 29 OCTOBER 2002



          PROPOSED WESTBOURNE RENEWAL AREA


              EXECUTIVE MEMBER(S): MICHAEL CARR

              CORPORATE DIRECTOR: ANDY SNOWDEN


PURPOSE OF REPORT

1.   To advise members of the Executive of the conditions prevalent in the
     specified area, the Neighbourhood Renewal Assessment that has been
     undertaken, and resident consultation carried out.

     To make recommendations regarding the declaration of the
     Westbourne Renewal Area in order to address the issues identified,
     and provide regeneration for the area.


RECOMMENDATIONS

2.   It is recommended that the Executive Board:

     a)    Agree that formal consultation on the declaration of a Renewal Area be
           undertaken in line with s.89 (5) of the Local Government and Housing
           Act 1989.

     b)    Subject to the results of the statutory consultation, Members agree to
           declare the area shown on the attached map a Renewal Area, namely
      “The Westbourne Renewal Area”, in accordance with the provisions of
      Part VII of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989. This will be a
      10-year programme of proposals to improve living conditions within the
      area.


      Schedule of properties:

         Abingdon Road                -     95-195 odd, 90-192 even
         Acton Street                 -     all
         Angle Street                 -     all
         Aspley Street                -     all
         Aubrey Street                -     all
         Byelands Street        -     25-37 odd, 26-60 even
         Croydon Road                 -     all
         Egerton Street               -     all
         Egmont Road                  -     0-31 odd
         Errol Street                 -     all
         Falmouth Street        -     all
         Haddon Street                -     all
         Lothian Road                 -     3-45 odd, 2-66 even
         Marton Road                  -     205-279 odds
         Muriel Street                -     all
         Park Vale Road               -     8-82 even
         Park Lane              -     85-137 odd, 100-130 even
         Roscoe Street                -     all
         Seaton Street                -     all
         Southfield Road        -     99-177 odd
         Upton Street                 -     all
         Victoria Road                -     all
         Waterloo Road                -     all
         Woodlands Road         -     24-118 even
         Whitfield Buildings          -     1-5 (off Park Vale Road)

NB. A map of the area is attached at appendix 1.



c)    Officers are satisfied that the area meets the criteria required for
      the Council to use its powers under the Local Government and
      Housing Act 1989, to declare the area defined, as a Renewal
      Area. The criteria laid down by the Secretary of State are as
      follows:
Criteria                                                                         Project
                                                                                 Area

1. Minimum 50 dwellings                                                          1258

2. Minimum 1/3 of dwellings in private ownership                                 91%

3. Minimum 1/3 of dwellings are:

     a) dwellings which are unfit for human habitation (within the meaning
        of section 604 of the Housing Act 1985);                                 55%
        or

     b) dwellings requiring works in respect of which grant would be available
        in accordance with chapter 1 of part 1 of the Housing Grants,
        Construction and Regeneration Act 1996;
        or

     c) dwellings in a building in respect of which a group repair scheme
        could be prepared in accordance with chapter 11 of that part.


4. Minimum 10% of the households in the area appear to be eligible for one       Council
     or more forms of income-related or income based state benefit.              Tax
                                                                                 Benefit
                                                                                 33%


                                                                                 Income Support
                                                                                 32%




REASONS

3.      The recommendations are supported by the following reasons:

        (a)     It is evident from the physical and social information available that there
                are high levels of deprivation within the area, and that housing related
                problems are a major feature. Therefore, long term investment proposals
                are required to address housing conditions together with the general
                environment, to ensure that the area can remain sustainable in the future.

        (b)     A Neighbourhood Renewal Assessment has been carried out in
                accordance Department of the Environment Circular 17/96 – Private
                Sector Renewals: a Strategic Approach. The Best Course of Action
                identified for the area is a programme of regeneration works to address
                levels of unfitness within properties, and undertake general
                improvements to the street scene and general environment.
     Whilst the main focus of the Renewal Area will be housing based, it is
     envisaged that the Housing Renewals Team will be in a position to
     facilitate various other initiatives within the area. This may be achieved
     via liaison with other Council Departments or outside bodies, together
     with communication and consultation with stakeholders in the area,
     ensuring a co-ordinated approach to the regeneration of the area.

     Initially funding will be targeted towards the improvement of existing
     housing stock and the surrounding environment. However, it must be
     stressed that should new information or further consultation provide
     alternative options to improve the housing market, then these will be
     explored as part of a wider strategy and implemented as part of the
     Renewal Area.

     The background work undertaken thus far provides evidence that the
     area is a sustainable one. In light of this, and to build upon the Housing
     Market Renewal Strategy work being undertaken across the town, the
     Renewal Area programme will be developed to fit strategically with
     re-structuring work and the wider regeneration of the town centre.

c)   Some consultation has already been undertaken with
     stakeholders in the area during the development of the proposals,
     as part of the NRA process. Those who have been consulted
     include the following:

        Residents
        Community/Religious groups
        Private landlords
        Housing Associations
        Local Businesses
        Other statutory bodies/Local Authority Departments

     Various methods have been used to communicate including 4
     resident/landlord consultation meetings, a meeting with the ethnic
     minority community in the local Mosque, house condition surveys,
     resident surveys, numerous communications via letters, and a
     newsletter/information booklet to every household in the area.
     Housing staff have also been available throughout the process to
     respond to any queries that have arisen.

     From the consultation undertaken key issues affecting the area
     have been highlighted, these can be grouped into 5 major
     categories, as follows:

      Housing
              Crime
              Environment
              Social
              Traffic problems

           These issues have been reflected within the NRA, within either
           the socio-environmental or economic assessment.

     d)    The Central Renewal Area located around the St. John’s Gate
           area of the town came to the end of its 10 year life in July 2002,
           and the nearby Clarendon Renewal Area between Southfield
           Road and Borough Road is half way through its 10 year life.

           The proposed Westbourne Renewal Area shares one of its boundaries
           with the Clarendon Renewal Area along Southfield Road, and provides
           the opportunity to continue our area based strategic approach to
           regeneration of older housing within the town.


DECISION IMPLEMENTATION DEADLINE

4.   For the purposes of the scrutiny call in procedure this report is considered as
     non-urgent.


BACKGROUND & CONSULTATION

5.   A brief overview and background to the area is provided below.

     a)    The proposed Westbourne Renewal Area is situated approximately ¾
           mile south of the main commercial centre of the town, within easy
           walking distance (appendix 1). It consists of 1258 properties 1204
           residential, 50 commercial, 2 purpose built blocks of flats, a children’s
           day nursery and a Mosque. The University of Teeside is situated to the
           West boundary of the area off Woodlands Road, to the North of the area
           is bounded by Southfield Road which also forms a boundary of the
           current Clarendon Renewal Area. To the east is Marton Road with
           commercial properties and Longlands College of Further Education
           beyond. The area is bounded to the south by Egmont Road and Park
           Lane with further University buildings to the South side of Park Lane
           and Albert Park beyond.

     b)    The age of the housing in the area is predominantly pre-1919 terraced
           properties, with some younger terrace properties dating from inter-war
           period. There is a mixture of property types, the majority being small
           two and three bedroom terraced houses, with some larger 3 bedroom
     terraces on Egmont Road, Park Vale Road and Abingdon Road. Large
     3-4 bedroom terrace properties are located on Lothian Road and
     Croydon Road, and in addition to those on Southfield Road and
     Woodlands Road there are three storey terraced properties, many of
     which are Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO’s). There are
     currently 13 HMO’s on the Councils HMO Registration Scheme within
     the Renewal Area.

c)   Analysis of the housing tenure information shows that the area is
     primarily owner occupied (67%) and privately rented (24%). There are
     lower levels of social housing stock with Housing Association
     properties accounting for 4% of the stock, and Local Authority 5%.
     Due to the close proximity of the University, a large amount of the
     private rented sector is let as student accommodation.

d)   The land use within the area is predominantly high-density terraced
     housing together with the access roads to these properties. There is also
     a nucleus of commercial business along Victoria Road and Waterloo
     Road, which serve the local community. In addition there is a Mosque
     situated on Waterloo Road which provides a place of Worship for the
     large Muslim population (36%) in the area.

e)   It is evident from the physical and social information available that poor
     housing related problems are a major feature of the area. A significant
     number of properties within the area are in need of substantial repair or
     improvement, this is borne out by the high unfitness levels (55% unfit).
     There are currently 66 empty properties in the area, these properties
     attract vandalism, nuisance and anti-social activities. Although these
     empty properties have a detrimental effect on the locality, the area does
     not suffer to a great degree at present. However, it would be one of the
     Renewal Area objectives to seek ways in which to satisfactorily deal
     with empty properties within the area.

f)   There has been no strategically planned investment within the area over
     the last twenty years, and this is reflected in the extent of housing and
     environmental improvements required to regenerate the area. Since
     renovation grants became discretionary the policy of the council has
     been to target resources on area basis, only providing grant assistance
     outside these areas where the case is deemed to be presenting an
     imminent risk to the health and safety of the occupants. Therefore,
     regeneration activity has been restricted to improvements carried out by
     the property owner, with a limited number of grants to individual
     properties funded by the Local Authority.

     Physical and Social conditions have declined in the area over the
     years which the Council are committed to addressing via the
           Renewal Area. However, without the co-ordination of policy and
           concentration of powers associated with this declaration, it is
           unlikely that long term revitalisation will be achieved.




OPTION APPRAISAL

6.   The overall option of whether to implement the recommendations of this
     report or decline the approval will have vital implications for the
     Westbourne neighbourhood, the residents/stakeholders in the area and
     continuing regeneration programme of older housing areas in the town
     centre.

Option                  Advantages                Disadvantages
Carry out the      Continuance of the  Areas outside the
recommendations     actions         already    designated area will
                    undertaken as part of      not benefit from the
                    the SRB projects in        projects          and
                    the area.                  resources       being
                                               invested.
                   Improve the quality of
                    life of residents in the  Residents outside the
                    area.                      designated area will
                                               be precluded from
                   Meet expectations of       any       of       the
                    residents in the area.     improvements
                                               planned for the area.
                   Continue the impact
                    of the improvements
                    made              within
                    neighbouring
                    Renewal Areas.

                   Enables       efficient
                    targeting            of
                    resources.

                   Increase          the
                    sustainability of the
                    area in general.
Decline the approval          Allow          capital  Reversal in principle
                               resources    to    be    to    the    actions
                               targeted for housing     currently underway
                               projects elsewhere in    as part of the SRB
                               the Town.                programme          of
                                                        improvements.

                                                            Expectations of the
                                                             residents in the area
                                                             will not be met.

                                                            A decline in the
                                                             quality of life of local
                                                             residents.

                                                            The sustainability of
                                                             the area may decline
                                                             if investment is not
                                                             forthcoming.




FINANCIAL AND WARD IMPLICATIONS

7.    The anticipated costs to undertake the recommended Best Course of Action
      have been provisionally estimated at £5 million, which will be distributed over
      a 10-year period.

      However, it is envisaged that during the life of the Renewal Area further
      detailed investigations will take place, providing additional evidence to support
      more extensive schemes where appropriate. This may obviously involve
      increased funding which we are unable to foresee at the present time, but all
      sources of additional funding will be explored, and no schemes will be
      undertaken unless the necessary monies are in place to support them.

      The Council has recently submitted a bid for £300,000 of SRB funding to
      undertake an improvement scheme to properties along Marton Road. These
      properties are within the proposed area, and if approved, this will form part of
      the overall funding required for the Renewal Area, and provide an initial focus
      following its declaration.

      Further funding over the lifetime of the Renewal Area will be sourced from the
      Housing Investment Programme allocation, together with further bids through
      initiatives such as SRB that are available at certain stages in the future.
      The implications of the recommendations affect the Westbourne Ward. The
      Ward Councillors have been consulted.


COUNCIL POLICY FRAMEWORK AND BUDGET

8.    The Council’s policy document for the Housing Investment is the Housing
      Strategy. This project contributes to key actions within the strategy remit.


CORPORATE OBJECTIVES

9.    The recommendations are in line with the following Corporate objectives:

      Investing in our neighbourhoods

      Improving urban living


                CORPORATE DIRECTOR: ANDY SNOWDEN


     HEAD OF SERVICE: BILL PERCH, HEAD OF HOUSING SERVICES


BACKGROUND PAPERS

The following background papers were used in the preparation of this report:

 Westbourne Renewal Area Declaration Report – Housing Renewals Team,
  Middlesbrough Council, 2002.


AUTHOR: Steve Brodrick, Principal Housing Renewal Officer
TEL NO: 01642 264533

_______________________________________________________
Address:
Website: http://www.middlesbrough.gov.uk
APPENDIX 1 : MAP OF THE WESTBOURNE RENEWAL AREA

				
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