The Mayor and the Director of Regeneration and Culture submitted a report for the Executive’s consideration. The purpose of the report was to seek approval to deliver the programme of schemes developed as part of the Towns Fund Ward Initiative Project and for the Council to adopt and maintain the assets.
The Town Deal Board had approved £1m funding for the project. An online survey of residents had been supplemented with a process of seeking expressions of interest from Ward Councillors, to identify local priorities with community support. Parks, green spaces and play areas had been found to be the areas requiring greatest investment, which had been reflected in consultation preferences.
Ten projects had been submitted by Members and those were cross referenced with the Elected Members Small Scheme (EMSS), to avoid duplication. Projects to the value of approximately £420k had been identified by Members with the indicative project costs validated by Environment and Community Services (ECS).
Member, Executive and Mayoral requests had also been identified through discussions with ECS, Cultural Services and Sports and Leisure. Priorities had been recorded by the Strategy, Information and Governance Team. Those priorities had identified a significant list of additional projects/requests, which would meet the objectives of the Town Deal allocation. 29 potential projects had been identified, costing over £1.26m.
The long list of projects submitted had been assessed against programme objectives, eligibility, local impact, deliverability and long-term liabilities. The recommended list included all of the eligible Member submissions and equated to the full £1m available from the Towns Fund. The agreed list was attached at Appendix A1 of the submitted report. Those projects not prioritised, would be held in reserve, should a selected scheme not go ahead. Those not currently supported, but held in reserve, were detailed at Appendix A2.
The proposed programme, for approval, was contained under paragraph 6 of the submitted report.
The other potential decisions that had not been recommended included:
· Do nothing - That was not recommended, as it would not have met the requirements of the Towns Fund or address local issues.
· Invest the Council’s own resources - The Council did not have adequate funding to deliver projects on the scale required.
· Invest less Towns Fund resource - The funding allocated was felt to be a minimum requirement to make a real and lasting change to Middlesbrough’s environment. Suggested projects far exceeded the funding available.
1. That it be noted that the business case for the Towns Fund Ward Initiatives Project had been approved by Middlesbrough’s Town Deal Board.
2. That the programme of works developed as part of the Towns Fund Ward Initiatives Project, as set out in appendix A1, be approved.
3. That the assets created by the investment be adopted and maintained by Middlesbrough Council, as appropriate.
4. That works commence to deliver the programme as soon as possible, subject to supply chain lead times, local notifications/consultation and any required planning permissions.
5. That the Director of Regeneration and Culture and Director of Environment and Community Services, in consultation with the Mayor, be authorised to determine an alternative project for delivery and form the reserve list, should any project be unable to progress due to any legal or technical reason.
The proposal planned to deliver projects requested and required by residents and Councillors to address issues and provide improved facilities on a Ward level.