Deal struck is a ‘significant step’ towards more affordable housing stock

The new collaboration aims to deliver more affordable housing schemes like the Beechdale Estate in Walsall

A deal has been struck between the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and five of the region’s leading housing associations to accelerate and increase the number of affordable homes for local people.

A memorandum of understanding has been signed between the WMCA and five members of the West Midlands Housing Association Partnership (WMHAP) to develop a business case for driving affordable housing developments, economic activity and housing policy objectives.

Commenting on the Affordable Housing Collaborative Development Vehicle (CDV), Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street, who chairs the WMCA, said: “This ground-breaking new partnership brings the WMCA together with the combined expertise and resources of five of the largest housing associations within the WMHAP with the aim of providing even more affordable homes for the people of the West Midlands.

“Our region has led the way on housebuilding with record numbers in recent years, but our focus now is on how we build even more homes that are truly affordable. Alongside our new definition of affordability, which links to income rather than the market rate, this partnership will help do exactly that.”

Councillor Mike Bird, leader of Walsall Council and WMCA portfolio holder for housing and land, added: “This coalition is central to our mission to utilise our stock of brownfield land to deliver inclusive growth and affordable homes.

“A key goal is to establish the region as the national leader in unlocking challenging brownfield sites, especially along key transport corridors and using them to create vibrant new communities that offer good quality, affordable homes for local people.

“By injecting new life into derelict sites we can help protect our Green Belt and drive an economic recovery that benefits all our communities.”

The CDV collaboration includes Accord Housing Association, Bromford Housing Group, Citizen Housing Group, Midland Heart and whg (Walsall Housing Group). The memorandum of understanding sets out a joint commitment to deliver more housing alongside the WMCA.

Kevin Rodgers, chair of WMHAP, said: “Collectively, we welcome the commitment from the WMCA to build the essential new affordable homes the region needs.

“All of the members of the WMHAP are committed to working together to making this new vision a reality and see the signing of the memorandum of understanding as the significant step in an exciting partnership.”