government building

Government lay out plans for more than £2bn of property savings

The Government have laid down a roadmap to drastically cutting down expenditure by cashing in on property assets, modernising construction processes and reducing overall operating costs, in a move that could save the sector more than £2bn. 

In support of the Government Hubs programme that aims to consolidate staff into less buildings, the Government are set to sell £1.5bn worth of property, subsequently making room for the sector’s attempts to streamline infrastructure and recycle money back into the economy. 

The residual £500m will be saved by ensuring that only the best and the most modern building materials are used during estate construction, cutting spend on leases, and making the most of the latest energy sources. 

All of this is part of the new Government Property Strategy for 2022-2030 that was announced by Minister for Brexit Opportunities and Government Efficiency, Jacob Rees-Mogg, last week. 

He said: “We are cutting the cost of the public estate so that we can return money to the taxpayer. All spending on government property needs to be justified. This will also help us deliver the Places for Growth programme, which will allow greater savings and mean the government is closer to the communities it serves.” 

The new initiative will also look to expedite the Places for Growth programme, which is relocating 22,000 civil service roles out of London by 2030 – around 7,000 of which have already made the move out of the capital, with 1,389 staff moving to Yorkshire and the Humber, the most of any region in the UK. 

Other parts of the UK have also benefitted from the Places for Growth scheme too, with over 1,000 government jobs being transferred to areas in the North West and approximately 550 moving to the North East. 

The new strategy also promises to invest £300m in funding to help renovate and reinvigorate smaller brownfield sites across England, so the unused land can be made appropriate for new housing, as part of the One Public Estate (OPE) programme. 

Many parts of the country have already seen the benefits of OPE, with an old library in Waltham Forest being converted into 67 new homes and a central Family and Homes Hub. West Suffolk have also been beneficiaries after the ground-breaking Mildenhall Hub delivered everything from health and employment, to education, culture and leisure services under one single roof, bringing prosperity right into the heart of the region. 

More information on the new strategy is available here

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