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UK Regeneration Areas in 2021

The UK has rapidly changed over the last few decades thanks to a host of UK regeneration efforts. From Liverpool to London, cities and towns from across the country are almost unrecognizable from 10 years ago. If you want to learn all about the major UK regeneration projects, keep reading this ultimate guide to UK regeneration hotspots.

Top UK Regeneration Hotspots

As a property investor, there’s one key aspect of a city you need to keep an eye on: regeneration.

Regeneration can be one of the best signposts for a city that’s worth investing in, as UK regeneration projects can often cause a city to boom in rental demand and capital growth.

The UK has seen a wealth of regeneration in the last two decades, with several key cities like Liverpool and Manchester completely transformed through the efforts of UK regeneration.

These previously run-down cities are now some of the best places to live and often promote some of the highest rental demand.

With so many areas being regenerated UK, it may be hard to choose the one most ripe for investment. With this in mind, where’s the best place to invest?

Well, if you want to find the best regeneration areas in UK 2021 to help answer this question, you’ve come to the right place.

Here we have listed 12 top UK regeneration areas worth considering for your next buy to let venture.

From small towns to megacities, these are the absolute best UK regeneration areas getting remade and redefined in 2021 and beyond.

Keep reading to learn more about UK regeneration hotspots and the UK regeneration projects that have helped UK towns and cities boom.

 

List of Regenerations Areas in UK

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What is Regeneration?

Before we get onto our list of regeneration areas in UK, though, it’s important to address the elephant in the room. What exactly do we mean by regeneration?

When talking about regeneration, we are referring to the money invested into an area that leads to the development of new transport links, retail spaces, housing, commercial areas, and leisure spaces like parks.

This can be both inward investment from the local government or city council, but can also mean investment from foreign sources like overseas investors.

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1) Liverpool 

Key projects:

  • LiverpoolONE
  • Knowledge Quarter
  • Liverpool Waters

Where better to start on our list than perhaps one of the greatest UK regeneration success stories and UK regeneration hotspots of the last century?

The European Capital of Culture in 2008, Liverpool has been transformed over the last two decades, thanks to billions of pounds pumped into the local economy.

Liverpool now sits as the top UK city for computer science research and is the 2nd fastest growing digital cluster in the UK.

Liverpool is undoubtedly one of the best UK regeneration areas. There have been so many UK regeneration projects in the city, in fact, that it would warrant a whole list of its own.

Regeneration in the UK has transformed many places, and Liverpool is almost unrecognisable from even a decade ago.

The North West is currently the top performer when it comes to property price growth, with a predicted 28.8% rise by 2025- the highest in the UK.

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Manchester Deansgate Street View Manchester Deansgate Street View

2) Manchester 

Key projects:

  • Spinningfields
  • NOMA
  • MediaCityUK

Out of all the UK regions, the North West seems to be doing the best.

Here, property prices are predicted to increase by 28.8% by 2025- the highest in the UK.

Continuing this North West trend of performing well is Manchester.

Another city that could warrant a list of its own, Manchester has also seen its fair share of mammoth UK regeneration projects and UK urban regeneration projects.

Alongside Liverpool, it is another example of the top UK regeneration areas and UK regeneration hotspots.

Regeneration Illustration with buildings and people living in the city Regeneration Illustration with buildings and people living in the city

More Upcoming Manchester Regeneration 

Aside from NOMA, there are several current developments in the pipeline.

Firstly, is the exciting Northern Gateway redevelopment.

Spanning a 155-hectare site in the north of the city centre, the Northern Gateway Redevelopment will see the creation of new spaces for enterprises and leisure facilities, as well as new transport links and public spaces.

It’s estimated the project could cost a whopping £1 billion.

There are also plans to expand and develop Withington Village, a suburb in south Manchester.

The local plan outlines improving public space and green space, creating a more pedestrian-friendly environment, and improving walking and cycling routes to the area.

Other projects include the regeneration of the North Manchester Health Campus, which will see a new acute and modern mental health hospital.

There are also plans for a Wellbeing Hub, which will include meeting spaces and a community café.

Notably, in 2021, there are set to be a series of projects finishing or making significant progress over the next 12 months.

These include the opening of the Royal Horticultural Society’s fifth public display garden, RHS Bridgewater, a public consultation meeting for the development of Piccadilly Gardens, and major development progress of a £1.5bn University of Manchester project, ID Manchester.

Like Liverpool, Manchester was one of the better regeneration areas in UK 2020, and has plenty of projects lined up for the future.

With extensive plans to improve shopping areas and new luxury apartments like Merchant’s Wharf, the North West seems to be one of the best places to live and invest at the moment.

These developments in the North West have led to massive growth in UK property prices and rental prices.

Property in the region is highly sought after and house prices in UK property are set to rise by 21.1% by 2025, according to Savills’ five-year house price forecast.

In the North West in particular, there is expected to be an even bigger growth at over 28.8%.

The region is currently top for house price growth out of the UK’s regional cities.

Rent prices are also increasing too with a 6.8% increase in March 2021. The area is arguably the best place to invest in property UK in 2021.

If you want to invest in the best UK regeneration areas, you should certainly consider Manchester property investment.

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City of London City of London

3) London 

Key projects:

  • Thamesmead
  • Old Oak Common and Park Royal
  • Barking Riverside

Speaking of iconic cities, where would our list of top regeneration areas be without talking about London?

An example of a regeneration area in south UK, the UK capital is no stranger to investment, with several massive London regeneration projects over the last 20 years.

With transformative London regeneration projects following the 2012 Olympics, the capital continues to flex its economic muscles.

The city attracts more foreign direct investment than any other in the UK. According to Statista, there were 458 projects as a result of foreign investment in 2018.

For context, the nearest competitor was Manchester with just 37 projects – meaning London has 12 times more projects than second place.

This is why London was one of the best regeneration areas in UK 2018, and continued to excel as one of the best regeneration areas in UK 2019, 2020, and now in 2021.

But London’s storied past isn’t what makes regeneration here interesting; it’s what the future holds for the capital, instead.

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London Property Market 

The London property market has struggled recently.

While regeneration and foreign investment continues to rise, affordability is continuously becoming a struggle with demand for property diminishing.

This has had a significant impact on house price growth, with the region set to increase in value by just 12.6% by 2025 – the lowest in the UK.

House price growth isn’t the only aspect where London is performing poorly.

Likewise, London is among the areas with the slowest recovery in jobs after covid.

In research by the Centre of Cities and Indeed, job postings in the capital are 26% below their pre-pandemic levels.

Meanwhile, the North is recovering the most, with nine cities and towns like Barnsley and Stoke having more job vacancies than before the pandemic.

There’s a great deal of uncertainty in the London market, and it may be a while before it’s worth investing in the region.

According to the latest UK House Price Index data available, London house prices in February 2021 were 12.48% lower than a month prior.

That means in just one month, house prices in the city of London dropped by a staggering £96,332.

For comparison, the average Liverpool property increased by a reasonable 0.53%.

While London is certainly an excellent example of regeneration areas, it may not be the ideal property investment location for the foreseeable future.

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Slough skyline in cloudy weather Slough skyline in cloudy weather

4) Slough 

Key projects:

  • Heart of Slough
  • Crossrail
  • Iron House and Steel House

One regeneration area in south UK that has often went under the radar is the town of Slough.

Located just outside of regeneration areas London, Slough has a bad reputation of being dull and drab.

However, over the last decade, the area has been completely transformed through regeneration.

Not only has the Slough region become one of the top regeneration areas thanks to prolific regeneration projects, but the area has started to generate one of the strongest local economies in the UK.

The town is home to the largest concentration of global corporate headquarters outside of London, and features the largest trading park in Europe.

While the town is already thriving, it’s set to soar to even higher heights thanks to a variety of top regeneration projects in the UK.

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Birmingham city centre in sunny weather and people out for a walk Birmingham city centre in sunny weather and people out for a walk

5) Birmingham 

Key projects:

  • High Speed 2
  • Birmingham Smithfield
  • Snow Hill Wharf and 105 Broad Street

According to research by Glide, Birmingham was in the top three regeneration hotspots along with Liverpool and Manchester.

With 15,708 empty dwellings in the UK’s second city, there is ample room for regeneration in the area.

Birmingham is another example of regeneration in the UK and is one of the many prolific UK regeneration hotspots.

The prospect of HS2 in the UK is incredibly exciting as it means that regeneration in UK cities can come at a much faster rate.

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Leeds canal in the evening with residential building along it Leeds canal in the evening with residential building along it

6) Leeds

Key projects:

  • South Bank Leeds
  • Leeds General Infirmary
  • The Majestic

Another Northern place on this list, this Yorkshire city is seeing some colossal regeneration schemes that will radically change the area.

Appearing at number four on the top 10 cities with the most regeneration opportunities, Glide found that 12,859 empty dwellings are waiting for investment.

Leeds City Council is certainly taking notice of this, with several ambitious projects in the pipeline.

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Bradford Town Hall with fountain in sunny weather Bradford Town Hall with fountain in sunny weather

7) Bradford 

Key projects:

  • Business Growth Programme
  • Bradford One City Park
  • Bradford City Village

Continuing our list of regeneration areas in UK areas, we have Yorkshire’s neighbour, Bradford.

With an estimated population of over 530,000, the city was 5th in the list of areas with the most regeneration opportunities, with much vacant commercial space.

Urban regeneration in the UK is incredibly high, and places like Bradford show how important it can be.

Regeneration in UK regions like Yorkshire is vital, and there are currently 15 projects in the pipeline.

Property Investment in regeneration areas Property Investment in regeneration areas

After sending off a planning application, Bradford secured a £52.6 million pot from the Government’s £900 million Getting Building Fund, allowing many projects to start their development process and supporting the regeneration of areas in the UK.

Described as integral to the West Yorkshire economy, the following schemes will create 2,300 new jobs and safeguard a further 500.

The eye-catching projects consist of the Business Growth Programme.

Around £7 million of the fund will be given to this programme which aims to help 175 businesses recover from lockdown and the COVID-19 pandemic.

It will also create 800 new jobs and safeguard a further 200.

Another project is expanding Enterprise Zones at Parry Lane.

This project will extend existing sites and open more land for commercial space and commercial property.

It’s estimated 400 jobs will be created upon completion.

Map of investments Map of investments

A further £7.5 million will be given towards Bradford One City Park, which will create new office space in the city centre and bring a total of 752 jobs.

These projects will no doubt allow town centres to thrive.

Other projects include the Bradford City Village scheme.

Entering phase 1 of a 10-year plan, the city centre will be revitalised by creating 1,000 new homes and 400 new jobs.

The outdated market hall is also set to be replaced in a scheme that will use £3 million of the fund.

Likewise, £7.4 million will be used towards the Temple Green Park and Ride Expansion, which will create 400 parking spaces and will reduce congestion and air pollution in the city centre.

Overall, there’s plenty of examples of a regeneration scheme in Bradford, and this will no doubt continue for the future, with more residential and commercial property on the horizon.

Thanks to the new government scheme supporting the regeneration of areas in the UK, Bradford is poised to become one of the better regeneration areas in UK 2021.

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8) Bracknell 

Key projects:

  • The Lexicon
  • The Deck
  • Princess Square

There are many regeneration areas in the UK, but perhaps an unexpected entry on this list is Bracknell.

With a population size of around 120,000, the town has seen staggering investment levels, with the town centre being transformed into a vibrant site thanks to a multimillion-pound project.

Sheffield Town Hall in the evening with street lights Sheffield Town Hall in the evening with street lights

9) Sheffield 

Key projects:

  • Sheaf Valley
  • Heart of the City 2
  • St Paul’s Tower

The third Yorkshire city on this list, the area has suffered heavily as a consequence of industrial changes.

Like many northern areas, though, funds are starting to be funnelled into the region to see the area thrive.

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Bristol - housing along the coast Bristol - housing along the coast

10) Bristol 

Key projects:

  • Bristol Temple Quarter
  • Temple Gate Scheme
  • Metrobus

Transport links in Bristol city are set to receive a much-needed overhaul, along with housing projects and enterprise projects that will help the local economy boom.

Coming from the Bristol city council, the main project to look out for is the Bristol Temple Quarter redevelopment plan.

The comprehensive plan is set to completely revitalise Bristol with new offices and research and learning spaces for the University of Bristol.

Bristol main train station Bristol main train station

A mixed-use residential scheme is also in the pipeline, which aims to supply 371 new homes.

Plans aim to help students of all ages.

There will be a new secondary school and sixth form developed by the Department for Education, containing 1,600 places for pupils.

Accommodation for 693 students will also be built. The project is set to cost £375m for the first ten years and create 4,335 jobs.

Bristol Temple Quarter will also feature the Temple Gate scheme, which aims to improve thousands of people’s journeys through the area.

This includes new pedestrian and cycle routes and better public transport facilities. Urban regeneration in the UK is important, and these developments will help those living in cities travel safer.

Speaking of transport facilities, Bristol city council have ambitious plans to revolutionise public transport in the area.

With Metrobus, visitors will be able to “buy before you board.” This means passengers can buy tickets, plan journeys, and view information for services at iPoints, terminals found at bus stops in the area.

Nottingham city centre fountain in sunny weather Nottingham city centre fountain in sunny weather

11) Nottingham 

Key projects:

  • Gateway Development
  • Intu Broadmarsh
  • Island Quarter

A contender for one of the best regeneration areas UK is Nottingham.

Found in the Midlands and home to over 330,000 people, Nottingham has seen its fair share of investment over the years.

The area behind the Robin Hood legend has got several current ongoing projects and further projects in the pipeline worth billions.

Nottingham’s headline project is the multimillion-pound Gateway development, which will see the Broadmarsh area transformed.

Part of this development is Nottingham College’s new City Hub campus.

With a 200-seat theatre, a gourmet training restaurant, classrooms, and social spaces, the City Hub cost £58 million.

Nottingham Castle Nottingham Castle

Another development comes at Nottingham Castle.

A total of £29.4 million has been invested back into the site with landscaping work and a new visitor centre to revitalise the area.

Work is also being done to create a new Broadmarsh car park, which will provide over 1,200 parking spaces.

Coupling that with developments for shopping in Broadmarsh, it seems like Nottingham is about to thrive.

Nottingham Science Park, located opposite the University of Nottingham, has also been developed.

A new research and development area has been born with a three-storey building featuring Grade A office space.

There are also plans for a vast £650 million regeneration project for the Island Quarter.

The first phase will see the development of a three-storey 2,000 sq. m pavilion located on the waterfront.

The home of Robin Hood is about to see a fantastic makeover for future generations.

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Durham city centre and viaduct Durham city centre and viaduct

12) Durham 

Key projects:

  • Milburngate Redevelopment

Located south of Newcastle upon Tyne, this city was number six in Glide’s list, with 8,903 vacant properties.

The city has seen plenty of investment over the years and has been transformed from a “sleepy cathedral city” into a thriving nightlife and leisure location.

Undoubtedly the most prominent project, the £150m Milburngate redevelopment, is making headlines for its ambitious plans.

Described as a waterside transformation in Durham’s Northern Quarter, these plans will see new luxury apartments built on the former site of a passport office.

Located near the River Wear, the area is also set to feature offices, restaurants, and bars.

Durham city centre with stores Durham city centre with stores

Town centres will no doubt thrive with an investment such as this.

Overall, the site spans 450,000 sq ft of mixed-use space, with 60,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, 230,000 sq ft of office space, 600 car spaces, and 153 luxury apartments.

There is also set to be a flagship 92-bed Premier Inn hotel.

It looks like Durham may soon become the best place for an evening out in the North East and is another example on this list of urban regeneration in the UK.

With fantastic nightlife opportunities, Durham and the North East is a prolific spot for students.

If you want to invest in student property, Durham may be a top area to consider for landlords to invest.

Regeneration Regeneration

Why is Regeneration Vital for Property Investors and Landlords? 

With so many areas being regenerated UK, it’s important to understand exactly why regeneration is so important if you’re a property investor or a landlord.

Generally, regeneration makes a city more appealing to live in.

With the creation of new commercial space, new jobs can be offered.

Likewise, new transport links can make it easier to live in the location, and green spaces can make living in an area more appealing.

This can have a significant impact on the property market.

You only have to look at cities like Manchester to appreciate what regeneration can do to the property sector.

Manchester property prices over the last 20 years have increased by a staggering 344.59%, rising from £44,813 in Q1 2001, to £199,235 in Q1 2021.

This growth is a direct consequence of regeneration projects in the UK.

Investing in emerging locations set for a tonne of future regeneration can also make a lot of financial sense.

After all, by buying in emerging economic areas, you can get prices considerably lower than the UK average.

Take Liverpool vs London, for instance.

While Liverpool is certainly a major city, property prices here are still very affordable, with averages of just £152,974, according to the UK House Price Index. That’s nearly £100,000 below the UK average.

On the flip side, London prices are valued at £675,309 in 2021.

This is a perfect example of investing in an affordable area that has a huge scope for growth.

After all, prices in the North West are set to rise by 28.8%, while London will rise by just 12.6%

Keep this in mind when evaluating the future potential of this list of regeneration areas in UK towns and cities.

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Interested in Regeneration UK and Want to Invest? RWInvest Can Help 

Many cities and towns are thriving at the moment.

With developers planning tonnes of residential and commercial properties, you may want to get involved in property investment. That’s where we come in.

RWInvest is an award-winning property investment company with 17 years’ experience in buy to let investing.

Our detailed guides will help you know more about the UK’s regional cities and find out which are worth your time.

We can help you get affordable housing in the best hotspots in the country, like Liverpool and Manchester, and give you reasons on why to consider buy to let investing.

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