Bexley wins £10.6m funding package to boost its environmental and sustainability credentials

Modernisation of the Belvedere employment area in Bexley has taken a major step forward with the announcement of £10.6m of funding to improve the local infrastructure.

The funding, provided by the Homes & Communities Agency (HCA), the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the London Development Agency (LDA), is being channeled through the London Borough of Bexley and the Invest Bexley regeneration partnership board.

The funding, says Invest Bexley, demonstrates a clear commitment to retaining existing companies and attracting new businesses and investors to the area.

The project will include construction of a new route linking Church Manorway directly with Mulberry Way, opening up the area and creating part of the route for the proposed North Bexley Transit.

Works will include sustainable drainage systems and restoration of the network of dykes that will improve flood storage capacity, reducing flood risk to local sites.

Improvements will also be made to footpaths and the surrounding environmental infrastructure, including new paving, lighting and signage, making the area safer and easier to navigate.

Access routes leading to Crossness Southern Marsh, Crossness Nature Reserve and the River Thames will be enhanced to enable residents and schools to make the most of the opportunities these sites offer to enjoy the local wildlife.

The project also aims to stimulate investment in renewable energy and low carbon technologies. A pilot programme will see buildings retrofitted with renewable energy technologies, further reducing carbon emissions and also cutting local businesses' energy costs.

Managing Director of Ferndale Foods, Richard Hallett, in offering his support for the project, said: "Belvedere has suffered from under-investment and a general decline in recent years, but it has the potential to become a significant eco zone within the Thames Gateway. Along with other businesses in the area, we are very mindful of our responsibility to minimise environmental impact, and this is a very positive step to help the local economy accomplish this."