A multi-million pound retirement village for people over the age of 55 is planned for St. Modwen’s £1 billion Longbridge regeneration, creating at least 50 full time jobs and up to 200 jobs on site during the construction.
Leading retirement village specialist The ExtraCare Charitable Trust has purchased five acres of land fronting Lickey Road, on the edge of Longbridge Town Centre. The £35 million village, designed by Birmingham-based Nicol Thomas Architects, will provide 260 one and two bed apartments carefully designed to encourage and support an independent and enriching lifestyle in later years.
At the centre of the retirement village will be a hub offering a range of 18 communal facilities including a village hall, bar and restaurant, gym, IT suite, hair and beauty salon and shop that can be accessed by residents, their families and local people in the Longbridge community. Up to 50 activities will also be on offer per week including choir singing, IT, woodwork, wheelchair aerobics and gardening.
ExtraCare residents will also benefit from the fast-growing Longbridge community which has so far seen a £300 million investment from St. Modwen and the creation of 3,500 jobs since regeneration began in 2003. Nearly 400 homes have been built by St. Modwen Homes and through a joint venture with Persimmon, and the £70 million town centre features household retailers including Sainsbury’s, Costa Coffee, Premier Inn and Beefeater. Work is about to begin on the second phase of retail to include a landmark 150,000 sq ft Marks & Spencer store, an additional 45,000 sq ft of retail space and car parking. Learning and leisure opportunities include the £66 million Bournville College and £2 million Austin Park.
This week the Government has also announced that it has given the go-ahead to an £8 million Longbridge infrastructure package which will see the introduction of ultrafast broadband and an upgrade to Longbridge Rail Station, an M42 Connectivity Scheme, enhanced links to the north and east of Birmingham, a cycle link scheme, new bus interchange, park and ride facilities and provision of real time transport information using plasma display screens.
Mark Curran, development and sales director at The ExtraCare Charitable Trust, said: “Longbridge is a perfect choice for our next retirement village – it is an exciting, vibrant new community that offers an abundance of facilities for our residents. We are delighted to be part of its growth and to join the long list of facilities and high profile businesses there.
“Our exciting scheme will provide a modern alternative to traditional retirement accommodation. Homes will be modern, comfortable, spacious and affordable, and there will be wide range of social facilities for both residents and the wider community to enjoy.”
Mike Murray, senior development surveyor at St. Modwen, said: “We are delighted ExtraCare has decided to invest in Longbridge. This will be a welcome addition to the housing offer as well as creating even more job opportunities for local people.
“The retirement village adds to the site’s variety and offers an all-inclusive community, while strengthening our aim to create both a successful business environment that delivers job opportunities and a sustainable community and destination for people to live, shop, learn and relax.”
The ExtraCare Charitable Trust has submitted a planning application to Birmingham City Council for the three and five storey retirement village, along with a new access road and roundabout, undercroft parking and landscaping, with work planned to begin in early 2015.
The village is one of at least five retirement villages planned for Birmingham as part of a £200 million development programme between The ExtraCare Charitable Trust and Birmingham City Council. Three of the Villages have already opened, most recently a 240- home Village on the Hagley Road last October. Another is set to open in Bournville next year.