Regen scheme beats off recession

A £40m urban regeneration scheme has closed in Aylesbury Vale, despite the recession-driven fall in property prices that has threatened many joint venture projects

Aylesbury Vale District Council has signed a deal with Akeman Partnership to make better use of its property portfolio in Buckinghamshire through a local asset-backed vehicle project.

The council will put its property assets into the joint venture with a private partner, which will contribute funding and development expertise.

The deal will be seen as a welcome boost to the sector, where many projects have been shelved because of difficulties in raising finance.

Law firm Pinsent Masons, which advised on the deal, was quoted as saying there were half-a-dozen further schemes in the pipeline.

Partner Scot Morrison said: “We are delighted to have brought forward the Aylesbury Vale Estates partnership … in such a difficult market.

"We are now seeing clear variations of the model emerge, with housing and regeneration, development and investment derivatives. Market conditions have also driven a restructuring of the concept."