Homes England has completed a £74 million deal that will unlock the next phase of development at Ebbsfleet Garden City in Kent – funding a range of infrastructure works that include earthworks to fill in a lake to prepare the land for the development of more than 5,000 new homes.
The infrastructure works will unlock 657 acres of land that will be used to develop up to 5,290 new homes – accounting for around a third of the total Ebbsfleet Garden City housing development – as well as around 180,000 sq ft of commercial development.
The Homes England supported enabling works through a loan deal to Henley Camland include preparing land for the development of housing on both the Castle Hill site and the Eastern Quarry at Ebbsfleet. Henley Camland, the residential infrastructure and place-making firm which recently purchased the Eastern Quarry site from Landsec, has simultaneously agreed land deals for 2,900 homes to be developed. 2,600 of these homes will be delivered by Countryside Properties and Clarion Housing Group in a new joint venture, while and Barratt Homes will built 300 homes on this part of the wider site as a direct result of the works funded by Homes England.
Representing one of Homes England’s largest deals of the past 12 months, the £73.97m loan is being made through the Home Building Fund (HBF). The HBF helps unlock or accelerate the delivery of residential and mixed-use housing developments through both development loans and loan funding for the infrastructure needed to prepare land for development.
More than 1,000 of these new homes at Ebbsfleet will be provided by 2021, with the full scheme due to be completed over the next decade.
Nick Walkley, Chief Executive of Homes England, said:
“At Homes England we’re using our land, finance and expertise to speed up the delivery of new homes. The vital infrastructure works that we’re funding in Ebbsfleet will bring forward the development of many new homes by around four years overall and, importantly, will mean many more homes can be built in the earlier phases of the development as a result of our support with the significant infrastructure costs.”
The HBF loan will also mean other important services to support the housing development, such as a new secondary school, can be delivered much sooner than would have been possible without Homes England’s support. A ‘fast track’ route through the site connecting Bluewater to Ebbsfleet International Station will also be created.
Ian Piper, Chief Executive of Ebbsfleet Development Corporation who oversee Ebbsfleet Garden City, said:
“This from Homes England, when combined with the investments already made by Ebbsfleet Development Corporation in key utilities infrastructure, is key to delivering the new homes that are required to create our vision for the Garden City. It is a good example of public bodies working together to deliver great places”.
Ian Rickwood, CEO of Henley, which has secured the delivery of 2,900 homes through a series of simultaneous deals commented:
“Following Homes England’s investment and our quick succession of deals with various housebuilers, £1bn worth of quality homes will be delivered at a time when the UK is in dire need of them. We’ve worked hard alongside our partners to unlock these homes, as well as the new senior school and remain committed to bringing forward more homes and infrastructure at Ebbsfleet Garden City.”