A multi million pound development is set to transform Stalybridge Town centre and its identity indefinitely.
For more that 200 housing units and a number of businesses are expected to be built in a buy-up scheme 20 years in the making.
The major investment will essentially come from Greater Manchester Pension Fund (GMPF) in an overhaul that will change the face of Stalybridge forever.
In order to carry out the ambitious plans, eight businesses on Market Street, (between Hully Street and Chapel Street) will be bought and demolished to make way for what will predominantly be a large town centre housing estate.
As part of the development, entitled Stalybridge West, some properties will be rebuilt in a different location and offered back to the current owners on a first option basis.
Negotiations are expected to take place in the coming weeks after the pension fund's investment manager (GVA) - agents acting on behalf of the Greater Manchester Property Venture Fund (GVPVF), which is itself part of the GMPF, sent out letters to the effected businesses, of which a formal offer of compensation will be given during future meetings.
Ultimately, if negotiations prove fruitless, an investment in Ashton, well this is something that is going to be an enormous multi million pound investment in Stalybridge" said Cllr John Taylor, who was speaking in his capacity as the chairman of the pension funds property working group.
"This is a chance to make a real statement about the town and to turn it into a success in the near future. "
"We have the River Tame right beside the planned development so let's go and make it a feature and a really attractive place to live.
"This really could kick-start some growth in the town centre, the potential is huge"
Even though Cllr Taylor is also the Deputy leader of Tameside Council, he was keen to point out that his interests as a Tameside councillor are put to one side on this development.
"My main goal here is to make money for the pensioners so that their pension is paid every week," said Cllr Taylor, who joined the group and became chair back in 2010.
"I have been trying to get the ball rolling on this development as it has been ticking over for a very long time now. I'm just glad that we have finally got to a stage where we can press ahead with the one way or an other. "
"But despite my dealing at this phase, I won't have any input into the development once it gets to the design stage, it will be up to Stalybridge councillors to complain or support the project once it gets to the planning stage."
The origins of the development can be traced back to the early 90's with more properties bought be the GMPVF over the last ten years.
But it was not until Tesco enquired about building a larger store than their Acres Lane premises in the town back in 2010 that the sire gained interest with developers.
The supermarket giant initially wanted to build a two tier superstore - similar to their store in Hattersley - after Tesco bosses faced a backlash to extend their current site in 2008.
Since that time, Tameside as a whole has lacked the required investment in new housing, leaving the borough with a Government target to fill in achieving the levels of much needed housing.
"This is why the development will have a positive impact on the area" said Cllr Taylor.
"It's a win-win situation, because the GMPF is willing to invest in the construction of much-needed homes in Stalybridge to revive the town centre, while at the same time securing a good return for our members pensions. "
"It's great to see that the fund is able to take advantage of this great opportunity to invest in new homes that are so clearly needed in Tameside."
by Max Wieland.
Reporter and Chronicle Newspaper
October 9th 2014
Please Note: This is not, necessarily, the view of Stalybridgetown.com but a copy of a report in the Reporter and Chronicle Newspaper so that our readers are kept up to date with the major happenings in the town centre. - See more at: http://www.stalybridgetown.com/articles/town-centre/multi-million-pound-new-town-vision-stalybridge#sthash.no4g6sQM.dpuf