A pilot scheme encouraging local councils to work with central Government and other public sector organisations to share buildings and re-use or release surplus property has been launched – in Yorkshire, this includes the cities of Hull, Leeds and Sheffield.
The ‘One Public Estate’ scheme will stimulate growth and encourage redevelopment. It is being run by The Government Property Unit in Cabinet Office working with the Local Government Association (LGA), and will examine issues within geographic areas rather than departmental structures, making use of local knowledge. It will promote sharing buildings or selectively selling land to encourage regeneration and growth, local development and business.
Chloë Smith, the parliamentary secretary for the Cabinet Office commented “In central government, we’re working hard to ensure the taxpayer does not have to pay for empty buildings. Already, we’ve raised over £1 billion nationally by getting departments to work together and use their property more efficiently. It’s great to see local authorities making such good progress, by thinking in new ways about property issues.”
The pilot areas will include:
•Cheshire West and Chester