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Alsop's New Islington takes further step forward

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Urban Splash has pledged to provide homes as 'cheap as chips' at its high-profile regeneration schemes across Manchester.

The developer has signed a deal with Manchester Methodist Housing Group (MMHG) and the Housing Corporation to provide homes for as little as £60,000 at Will Alsop's New Islington and MOHO.

The one-, two- and three-bedroom flats will be restricted to key workers and first-time buyers who will be expected to find 75 per cent of the asking price but won't have to put down a deposit. The remaining share will be held by MMHG using funding from the Housing Corporation.

Urban Splash's early efforts to offer affordable but 'funky' homes have been difficult to control because of escalating land prices and rising building costs, admits Nick Johnson, Urban Splash development director.

But by teaming up with the Housing Corporation and the government, Johnson believes the Alsop scheme will become much cheaper.

Matthew Harrison, MMHG deputy chief executive, added: 'This initiative means that people on lower incomes will not be marginalised but will be able to secure a place in areas traditionally dominated by high-value homes - and it's right at the heart of the initiative to create sustainable communities.'

by Clive Walker

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