Pri­vate link to devel­op­ment plan de­fended

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

COUN­CIL bosses have de­fended their de­ci­sion to strike a deal with a pri­vate com­pany to fi­nally bring 1,100 new homes, a su­per­mar­ket, school and link road to the south of the town.

Cheshire East Coun­cil has been crit­i­cised for forg­ing an agree­ment with a firm called TG Ltd to drive for­ward pro­pos­als for the South Mac­cles­field Devel­op­ment Area (SMDA), be­tween Con­gle­ton Road and Lon­don Road.

The au­thor­ity, which owns 26 hectares of the 63 hectare site, wants to en­ter into an agree­ment with TG Ltd, which owns the ma­jor­ity of the re­main­ing land.

But Labour coun­cil­lors have crit­i­cised the coun­cil for not re­veal­ing any de­tail of the com­pany, which is based in Jersey.

Coun Sam Cor­co­ran said: “In the in­ter­ests of open­ness and trans­parency, the di­rec­tors and ben­e­fi­cial own­ers of any com­pany that the coun­cil in­tends to en­ter into a col­lab­o­ra­tion agree­ment with should be made pub­lic.

“Busi­nesses work­ing closely with the coun­cil should be open and trans­par­ent and not hide in off­shore havens.”

Af­ter it was ap­proached by the Ex­press, Cheshire East Coun­cil re­vealed that TG Ltd was reg­is­tered in Fe­bru­ary 2014 to 12 Castle Street, St He­lier, Jersey JE2 3RT, but it said fur­ther in­for­ma­tion could be ob­tained for ‘an ad­di­tional charge’.

A coun­cil spokesman added: “TG Ltd owns the land ad­join­ing the coun­cil’s own prop­erty and, as landowner, the com­pany is keen to de­velop the site, work­ing col­lab­o­ra­tively to de­liver much-needed hous­ing, im­proved leisure and re­tail of­fer and a de­vel­oper-led link road.

“These ex­cit­ing pro­pos­als would re­vi­talise and re­gen­er­ate the south­ern gate­way to the town and boost jobs, in­vest­ment and fa­cil­i­ties in Mac­cles- field.”

The coun­cil hopes to work with TG Ltd to cre­ate a mas­ter­plan which would re­gen­er­ate the south­ern gate­way to the town, in­clud­ing: up to 1,100 homes, a 7,500 sq m re­tail devel­op­ment in­clud­ing su­per­mar­ket, a new link road, im­proved play­ing fields and new com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties and a new pri­mary school.

It also claims the sub­se­quent hous­ing and re­tail de­vel­op­ments could boost cof­fers by £14m.

Google Street View

●● The view across the South Mac­cles­field Devel­op­ment Area from Con­gle­ton Road. In­set: Coun Sam Cor­co­ran

●● The devel­op­ment area in­volves build­ing 325 homes and a new su­per­mar­ket on land be­tween Con­gle­ton Road and Lon­don Road in Mac­cles­field

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