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New taskforce to unlock publicly-owned land for regeneration

A regional taskforce dedicated to unlocking publicly owned land for housing and regeneration has been launched by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA). 

The taskforce brings together leading property experts across the public and private sectors to explore how public land could be used to provide greater benefit to local communities and the wider region.

It will support wider collaboration and best practice in the development and disposal of public land in the West Midlands.

The total amount of land in the West Midlands in public ownership amounts to more than 5,500 hectares.

This represents a major opportunity to realise the economic value of these assets and ensure local communities and businesses directly benefit from their disposal and development. 

The taskforce is being chaired by Stephen Barter, chairman of Wilton Capital Advisers. He has more than 40 years of real estate experience as an investor, developer and adviser. Among other appointments, he is a special adviser to Transport for London on the future funding and management of its land and buildings. 

‘At the WMCA, we have identified that public land can play a vital part in our economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic,’ said West Midlands mayor, Andy Street.

‘We have brought together senior leaders from the public and private sectors with expertise in land and real estate, convening to unlock the unrealised land potential in the public estate.  

‘By supporting the identification of surplus land to meet the additional housing and employment needs of the region and enable additional social infrastructure, the Taskforce can offer insight into how land can be used to fast-track an inclusive economic recovery for the region.’

Organisations involved in the taskforce include: Homes England, British Property Federation, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, Legal and General, Arup, Argent, Lovells, Urban Splash, Birmingham City Council, NHS Property Services, Canal & River Trust, Transport for West Midlands, Wilton Capital Advisors, WMCA, West Midlands Urban Community Homes, Segro, Savills, Home Builders Federation, Sigma Capital, Telford and Wrekin Council, Citizen Housing, Environment Agency, Cast Consulting, Local Government Association, Coventry and Warwickshire LEP, West Midlands Combined Universities, Birmingham City University, St Modwen, Useful Projects, West Midlands Housing Association Partnership.

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