Plymouth Railway Station is to be completely transformed after securing multi-million pound Government funding.
The project comes as part of a £43.5 million cash boost for the wider South West region to help improve transport links, support local businesses and encourage growth.
The joint Great Western Railway and Network Rail proposal will see brand new shops and offices constructed, along with an open public space for improved accessibility to facilities and platforms. The current multi-storey car park is to be demolished with a new one built in a different location.
Not only is the current station in much need of a facelift, but so too is the view greeted by new visitors to the city. This is something Ian Bowyer of Plymouth City Council has noted:
“When people arrive here by rail, their first view is a 1960’s multi-storey car park and a very dated and tired impression of the city.
We want to change this and to overhaul the railway station completely. This project will provide a new gateway and the station will be designed so that the first image of the city will be of the view along Armada Way towards the sea and Smeaton’s Tower.”
The new railway station is only part of a number of regeneration schemes centred on Plymouth and the wider Devon region. This shows that both the government and investors are confident in the area’s potential for growth.
Other local projects include Phase 3 of the Somerset Energy Innovation Centre, numerous youth education schemes and a £9.4 million cash injection in superfast broadband to help rural areas stay connected.
Overall, this brings the Heart of the South West Growth Deal, along with match funding of £115 million from the public and private sector, to a whopping £723 million in total.
The station revamp is set to act as a catalyst for further regeneration projects in and around Plymouth. The local economy will be massively boosted and SMEs given a better chance to expand. In turn, this creates new employment opportunities, job stability and higher wages.
This is a positive sign for property investors as it helps guarantee enquiries when selling and more reliable tenants if renting. Furthermore, mortgage applications are more likely to be granted in this current economic climate, especially whilst interest rates remain at record lows.
Property specialists Savills forecast that the South West will see house prices grow by nearly 30% by 2018, above the expected national average, and the chief benefactor of this growth will be Plymouth.
For buy-to-let investors, it’s worth looking into fully furnished, managed lets near the city centre for assured yields over a set period. This way, all the hassle of finding tenants and dealing with potential problems is managed on your behalf.
Beaumont Square is one such investment that provides a low-price entry route, with potential to tap into the rewarding private student rental sector. Construction has already begun at this site and is due to complete before 2018.
If you’d like to know more, you might enjoy our article, Why Invest in Plymouth.