Work to bring jobs and growth to Forest of Dean to start in

Published on Monday, 23 September 2013 14:02
Written by Sinead Fynes Black

Further preparations for a regeneration project which will bring hundreds of jobs and unlock major investment in the Forest of Dean will start in earnest from 23 September.

Contractors working for the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) are due to begin detailed investigation work on sites in Cinderford earmarked for a £10.5m Northern Quarter Spine Road project, a proposed college and new business premises. The ground investigation will provide the in depth technical information needed to shape the detailed plans for the road and college developments.

Following the demolition and clearance of most of the buildings on the former Northern United colliery site earlier this year, this is another visible stage of plans to create 1,200 jobs and unlock £100m in investment for the district by supporting an ambitious, education-led regeneration project.

The work will cover the route of the proposed Spine Road, the new junctions planned at the Northern United and Forest Vale sites and the site of the proposed college development close to Steam Mills lake.

The investigation will be used to inform detailed planning applications for the development, which are due to be submitted by the HCA and Gloucestershire College early next year. Gloucestershire College unveiled an early glimpse of how its proposed new facility could look last week.

David Warburton, HCA Head of Area, said:

"This further detailed preparatory work forms an important part of partners' efforts to bring new investment, jobs and prosperity to the Forest of Dean. It will help unlock the sites to new businesses and a state-of-the-art college facility which holds the key to the regeneration of Cinderford. We are committed to keeping local people updated while work is taking place and have stringent processes in place to ensure that all necessary regulations are adhered to."

Matthew Burgess, Principal and Chief Executive of Gloucestershire College, said:

"We are looking forward to the results of the ground investigation as we continue to move forward with our plans for a new sustainable Gloucestershire College Campus in Cinderford."

Cllr Patrick Molyneux, Leader of the Forest of Dean District Council said:

"It's great to see the development moving forward and some positive action on the ground. This is a great opportunity for Cinderford and the rest of the Forest."

Cllr Graham Morgan for Cinderford West and Chairman of the Cinderford Regeneration Board said:

"The ground investigation work is a major step forward in the Cinderford regeneration project and will help shape this major development to create jobs, investment and a superb education facility in the Forest."

The work is expected to complete by the end of next month, with local consultation activity on the plans taking place later this year.

The HCA's planning applications to bring new modern employment space and improved access to the former Northern United Colliery site and Forest Vale Industrial Park were strongly supported by the council's planning committee in February this year.

Source: Homes and Communities Agency 

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