York Central infrastructure works given go-ahead

Homes England and Network Rail will now oversee infrastructure works at the 2,500-home development site including work on a new public park.
City of York Council has given the go-ahead for infrastructure works at the 2,500-home York Central development. Credit: York Central Partnership

City of York Council has given planning permission for infrastructure works to start at York’s city centre quarter development York Central.

The York Central development will feature 2,500 new homes, up to 1.2 million square feet of commercial development and improved visitors access to the National Railway Museum. It is expected that the development will create around 6,500 new jobs and bring a £1.2 billion boost to York’s economy.

Homes England and Network Rail will now oversee infrastructure works as part of the project. These include a new bridge over the East Coast Main Line railway, new cycling and pedestrian routes, drainage systems and a new public park.

The government confirmed that it would invest £77 million into infrastructure works for the York Central project this past summer. This forms part of a £155 million funding package pulled together by the council for the project.

Peter Freeman, chair of Homes England, said: “York Central is one of the most important brownfield sites in the country and this exciting project will create homes, jobs and a better visitor experience for the city.

“Starting work on the infrastructure brings this development much closer and we look forward to working with all the project partners on behalf of the government to unlock this challenging site.”

The city council approved the reserved matters planning application allowing the infrastructure works for York Central to go ahead on Thursday 12 November 2020.

The York Central Partnership – Homes England, Network Rail, the City of York Council and the National Railway Museum – had submitted the planning application earlier this year.

The decision marks a key step forward in the development of the 45-hectare site, one of the largest urban brownfield regeneration sites in the country.

Initial clearance of the development site has already started to take place. Contractors are now due to begin work on site in early 2021.

Stuart Kirkwood, group property director for Network Rail, said: “We’re really pleased this development has taken such an important step forward.

“With our partners, we are excited to progress such a positive development for York which will deliver housing, jobs and economic growth. Unlocking under-used railway land is a core part of our strategy, helping to create great places for businesses and communities to thrive.”

Cllr Keith Aspden, leader of City of York Council, said: “This is another vital step towards delivering the York Central scheme and unlocking a £1.16 billion boost to our economy, including a new generation of jobs and hundreds of affordable homes when York needs it most.

“I would like to thank all our partners, including Homes England, Network Rail and the wider York Central Partnership, who have secured funding from West Yorkshire Combined Authority and the York and North Yorkshire LEP. Working together, we are delivering where decades of proposals have failed.”

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