Exeter City Futures have been given the go ahead to progress a new city development  concept; the Exeter Development Fund.  

Exeter City Futures has been working with local public institutions in Exeter, funded by One Public Estate to identify sites for a possible 12,000 new sustainable homes for one of the fastest growing cities in the UK.  

Karime Hassan, Chief Executive of Exeter City Council and Exeter City Futures said “Private sector developers don’t always for deliver for Exeter in a way that aligns with the vision for the city in the next two decades. Property developers’ accountability to their shareholders will usually have a greater motivation than their accountability to the residents of Exeter, and we need to change that.”

The outline plan for The Exeter Development Fund, which is delivered by southwest-based consultancy Global City Futures, sets out numerous benefits for Devon’s capital city. These include a possible 12,000 new sustainable homes, that would be designed in such a way as to minimise resident’s fuel bills – with a proposed minimum of 35% of these to be offered as affordable housing.  

Download the 152-page pdf document here:
The Exeter Development Fund Outline Business Case

Potentially, these would be congestion free communities, all designed to prioritise walking and cycling, with easy access to shops and leisure, making ‘15 minute communities’. The  plan, if successful, would include facilities with high-quality green spaces for socialising and relaxation, and it is envisaged that new employment opportunities would be created to  support the new homes.  

The Fund would also ensure that local communities are consulted, so that housing and  business developments take on board their needs and concerns, and in this way all  residents will be able to influence the new communities delivered.  

The Exeter Developement Fund model aims to make the most of the city’s wide range of  property, across various public sector institutions, to control ownership of the financing and  so control the outcomes of these developments. In this way the city could ensure delivery of  climate-ready, happy and healthy communities that would also generate returns to support  public sector services. 

This model, developed by Global City Futures, could be scaled and replicated across the  UK, making Exeter a flagship city leading the way to net-zero living. Roli Martin Head of Finance at Global City Futures, the southwest-based consultancy delivering The Fund, said “We believe the funding and delivery model we have created has the potential to raise the investment needed across the UK for modern city infrastructure. The Outline Business Case for the Exeter Development Fund has been agreed this month by the Cabinet Office and One Public Estate.” 

The Exeter development Fund would pool assets from across the public sector in the city to  give it secure borrowing capacity. In Exeter, the Fund has the support of Exeter City Council,  the University of Exeter, the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Trust and Exeter College.  

The Fund would operate grant-free, using equity from government, both central and locally.  

The next stage is for financial consultants at  Global City Futures to develop a Full Business Case, including consultation with local  communities and taking on their needs and concerns. The hope is to have The Exeter  Development Fund in place to add to the city’s 2030 net zero aims.  

Previous article about The Exeter Development Fund here