Former landfill sites to be transformed

Manchester City Council welcomes plans to clean up former landfill sites which have lain derelict for decades and transform them into usable land that will benefit residents.

A report going to this week’s executive sets out how the City Council could work with Wharfside Regeneration Development Limited, a specialist development company which plans to remove recyclable materials such as metal as well as methane gas from former landfill sites.

The land would then be refilled with harmless materials and cleaned up. This would create the potential for re-use of the land, for example to provide housing, schools and other community uses as well as creating improved areas of open space.

The City Council owns dozens of former landfill sites across Manchester which cannot be used because the land is contaminated, but which cost money to maintain.

Although not all of these sites will be suitable for development, it is hoped that this system will enable hundreds of acres of dormant land to be brought back into use.

The City Council is now considering a small site between Rochdale Road and Collyhurst Road in Collyhurst as a trial scheme before considering whether to do this in other parts of Manchester.

If approved, Wharfside Regeneration Development Limited will remove material from the 30acre site, a former quarry which was later used for landfill, and which is now an open piece of land.

The company will then seek to develop part of the site so it can be used for housing and landscape another area to create a better quality public area that can be used by the local community.

It is hoped that the proposals will bring the area back into use and will also complement other regeneration projects which are being planned nearby.

If the scheme goes ahead, the company would need to apply for planning permission before taking possession of the site. This will include asking local residents for their views and describing what they will do to make sure any impact of their work is kept to a minimum. Meanwhile, an independent project board will be set up to oversee the scheme.

Councillor Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s executive member for housing and regeneration, said: "The population of Manchester is set to grow significantly over the next few years and we have a genuine need for sites which have the potential to provide the good quality housing, schools and open spaces our modern city requires.

"Some of these sites have lain dormant for generations and this is an excellent opportunity for us to free up these pieces of land at no cost to the taxpayer, providing areas which will benefit our residents and help our city blossom.

"However, we need to make sure we do this properly and, if this trial scheme gets the go ahead, we will be keeping a very close eye on it to see if we can do this on other sites."

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