News - Construction News

Fund delivers place changing regeneration across England

The ECF (formerly the English Cities Fund) has doubled in size to £400M, building on success to date by supporting and unlocking the potential of cities and towns across England.

ECF is a unique partnership between Homes England, Legal & General, and Muse, which continues to invest in opportunities that create long-term, secure income streams, underpinned by societal demand.

ECF aims to drive regeneration and housing delivery to create high-quality urban environments that reflect the priorities of local communities.

The partnership has recently expanded with the injection of an additional £100m of equity from the partners, to be matched by an additional £100m of debt, which provides capacity for ECF to grow to £400m to deliver transformational change in areas that need it most.

ECF brings together Homes England’s ambition to deliver more affordable housing, Legal & General’s proficiency and experience in investing in transformative real estate and infrastructure, and Muse’s expertise in urban regeneration. It was first created in 2001 with £100m of investment to boost priority regeneration areas.

By 2036 ECF is expected to deliver more than 1m sq. ft of commercial space to support education, 17,000 new homes, and additional social infrastructure to support health and wellbeing. ECF delivers with a focus on place-based impact and investing in opportunities which deliver risk adjusted returns, alongside positive social and environmental outcomes.

Through close collaboration with local partners and understanding the needs of the communities in which it operates, ECF delivers transformative regeneration. Since its first investment in Liverpool in 2001 ECF has:

  • Completed five mixed-use regeneration projects across England (Liverpool, London, Plymouth, Salford, and Wakefield) worth £1.2bn
  • Delivered 2,150 homes in new neighbourhoods, along with 1,150,000 sq. ft of office, retail, and leisure space, and created over 8,000 jobs
  • Constructed the largest Passivhaus-certified affordable housing project in the Northwest boasting 96 affordable apartments
  • Reimagined a former surface car park in Salford, now the Eden building, which is a pioneering 12-storey office building. It is set up to be net zero carbon in operation in accordance with the UK Green Building Council’s Net Zero Carbon Framework and hosts Europe’s largest living wall
  • Developed plans for an innovation district at Salford Crescent with Salford Council and the University of Salford
  • Delivered new community infrastructure including a library and community centre at Rathbone Market in London and facilitated the delivery of the 1,000 pupil Plymouth Academy and 171-berth marina at Millbay.

ECF helps to alleviate pressure on housing in England by delivering affordable homes in areas which need them. As part of vibrant new places, ECF also delivers workspaces and community assets. These provide long term benefits and enhance local economies.

With a strong pipeline, additional capital will build on ECF’s success to date. Increasing in size will ensure ECF has a faster and greater impact across new locations, alongside existing place-based partnerships (Salford Crescent, Manor Road Quarter in Canning Town, Stockport 8 and St Helens, Merseyside).

Sir Michael Lyons, Chair of ECF, said: “ECF has had a real impact on cities such as Salford, Liverpool, London and Plymouth. We have really changed the places in which we have invested. We have provided homes, jobs, work space and new public realm. We always take a long-term view, emphasise sustainable change and work closely with local partners, sharing risks and rewards where that is possible.

“With this further expansion we will be able to invest in new towns and cities and will continue to bring our unique mix of policy expertise, long term investment and development capability to support their communities.”

If you would like to read more stories like this, then please click here