A regeneration fund which has invested £71m in South Yorkshire development, supporting the creation of thousands of jobs, has been extended for a further decade.
The South Yorkshire (SY) Jessica Fund (formerly SCR Jessica Fund) provides development debt funding across the region for commercial property and regeneration projects, predominantly offices and manufacturing parks.
It is now being extended for another ten-year term and its remit widened to support residential, retail and leisure development.
The fund is managed by global property consultancy CBRE and overseen by an investment board representing four local authorities and the Local Enterprise Partnership.
Rob Cuthbertson, associate director at CBRE's Investment Advisory Team, said: "This is excellent news and will provide an exceptional boost for the regional economy.
"It is also testimony to the great levels of success which have been stimulated by the fund over its first ten years.
"Through its approach, the fund has enabled the development of schemes which aren't able to attract other funding and has supported development of employment space where traditional sources of finance are not flexible enough to be utilised."
The original sources of capital are the European Regional Development Fund and Growing Places Fund, these have been supplemented with support from the SY Mayoral Combined Authority.
Launched in early 2013, SY Jessica's primary objectives are to enable economic growth through sustainable development in South Yorkshire; enhance long-term growth prospects and competitiveness of the region through enterprise, employment, regeneration and sustainability; and provide the infrastructure required to generate jobs.
Christian Foster (Doncaster City Council), chair of the investment board, added: "This is excellent news for development across South Yorkshire with all four Local Authority areas seeing development in their areas supported by the SY Jessica Fund. The ability of the fund to now also support residential and other commercial development adds an extra positive dimension going forward."
To date, the fund has enabled the construction of more than 3.3 million sq ft of employment floorspace, which has facilitated the creation of more than 7,000 jobs.
Additionally, the fund has attracted private sector investment in the region of £188m.
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