Neighbourhoods in Oldham and Rochdale set for cash boost?

Neighbourhoods in Oldham and Rochdale could be given a major transformation in a Government project.
The Oldham Rochdale Housing Market Renewal (HMR) Pathfinder is biding for £70 million to spend from 2006 to 2008.
That figure is a small part of the £2 billion of public and private investment that Pathfinder plans to bring to the boroughs over the next 15 years.
The bid outlines a long-term strategy to transform neighbourhoods and tackle some of the area’s most deep-rooted problems, including population ‘migration’ and overcrowding.
The long-term plans recommend that new homes are built close to areas which already have growing populations to allow communities to grow.
The proposals include building more than 12,000 new homes by 2019/20 and demolishing up to 8,600 homes over the lifetime of the project.
Investment in parks, improvement in neighbourhood street lighting, road surfacing and community safety also feature in the proposals.
Alastair Graham, Project Director of Oldham Rochdale HMR Pathfinder, said: “This our big chance to create better homes and neighbourhoods in Oldham and Rochdale. “Our bid document to the Government will not only describe our short-term plans, but will also put forward a long-term vision for the area. We want to make sure that in 15 years from now, neighbourhoods have been transformed and local people have a better choice of affordable, modern housing.”
The funding bid was submitted earlier this month to the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM).
And a decision from the ODPM on funding for 2006-08 is expected by November.