AN AGEING community centre building and row of shop units are set to be redeveloped to provide much–needed new affordable homes, a new community facility and replacement commercial units.
The Cambridge City Council-owned community centre, shops and flats currently occupying the site on at Akeman Street were built in the 1950s, but have now become difficult to repair and maintain. In addition the current community centre is not fully accessible for all users.
At a meeting of Housing Scrutiny Committee on 18 June, a scheme to build eight one-bedroom flats, six two-bedroom flats, three new commercial units and a replacement community centre was approved.
The site to be developed was identified as a potential site for new homes as part of an ongoing programme to develop land owned by the council and other public bodies for social housing.
The proposals for the new community centre at Akeman Street form part of the council’s wider strategy to ensure that community centres are located in parts of Cambridge with the greatest need, are financially sustainable and are flexible to meet the changing needs of the city.
Earlier this year residents were asked for their feedback on proposals for a new centre at Akeman Street at two public drop-in events.
Subject to planning permission being granted, the site will be developed by the Cambridge Investment Partnership, a joint venture between the council and Hill Investment Partnerships.
As part of the devolution deal for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough agreed with the government, the council negotiated a grant of £70m to build new 500 new homes. Part of this grant, along with Right To Buy receipts will be used to fund this development.
Cllr Kevin Price, Executive Councillor for Housing said: “We need to continue identifying sites in Cambridge where new homes can be built, including by replacing existing homes with better quality, sustainable homes that are fit for the 21st century.
“This scheme earmarked for Akeman Street offers a mixture of housing and facilities that will benefit the whole community, and help give more Cambridge people the secure and attractive homes they deserve.”