Vineyard Gate: The Return

Did you think that the much delayed Vineyard Gate development was dead in the water?

So did we, Comrades.

And then WOH.

This comes along: CBC has bought at auction a couple of properties on Osbourne Street close to the site. The aim is to give the Council more bargaining power whenever the developer decides to get its arse in gear.

This information has only been disclosed with the publication of the agenda [pdf] for the SEXY Revolving Investment Fund Committee, which next meets at the Town Hall on 10th August.

Before you go booking your front seat in the Grand Jury Room for what is essentially a mini-me Cabinet, it’s best to consider that most of the meeting is held in private and not for the Little People.

Meh.

But on the agenda is:

“To note the purchase of the two identified properties in Osborne Street which were purchased at auction on 27th July 2016.”

Noted.

Now what?

CBC waits for the developer to decide how it wishes to proceed on the scheme…

Cabinet put aside £6m back in March 2015 for the Revolving Investment Fund to play around with in relation to Vineyard.

The going, going, GONE auction purchase price remains a secret tucked away in the Town Hall.

The Revolving Investment Fund papers do disclose though that the guide price for the combined two properties was £280,000.

Also a key comment in the papers is:

“Whilst negotiations with the developer have still to be concluded…”

Vineyard Gate is far from a done deal. But CBC is clearly trying to strengthen its bargaining power by buying up the nearby properties.

The claim is made that it would have cost more to go down the route of a Compulsory Purchase Order.

Plus the papers add:

“Redevelopment in this part of the town centre has been a Council priority and together with sites on Queen Street formed part of the St. Botolph’s Quarter Masterplan of 2005.”

2005…

So not much of a priority, then

Hey hoe.