Cheltenham Borough Council Officially Appoints HBD X Factory as Development Partner for The Golden Valley Development

On Tuesday 12th July, Cheltenham Borough Council has announced that HBD X Factory has now been formally appointed as the development partner to assist in delivering the first phase of the £1bn Golden Valley Development (GVD) located in Cheltenham at the heart of the UK’s Cyber community.

Since the July 2021 preferred developer partner announcement, the GVD team alongside HBD X Factory, have been focused on achieving contract close which has now been adopted by the Council. 

The overall Golden Valley Development, spanning over 200 hectares, will provide 3,700 new homes, almost 12,000 new jobs and 2 million sq. ft. of commercial space with the National Cyber Innovation Centre at the heart of this thriving campus for cyber and digital technologies. GVD forms part of the UK Government’s Levelling Up plans and features within the National Cyber Strategy as key ‘to supporting the growth of cyber-related technology businesses’.  

Following the announcement, HBD X Factory is undertaking a variety of design exercises in advance of a public consultation programme, prior to planning submission, including a masterplan framework for the site and detailed proposals for the Innovation Centre. 

Commenting about the official appointment, Leader of Cheltenham Borough Council, Councillor Rowena Hay said: “This is the largest development that Cheltenham Borough Council have ever embarked upon and shows the scale of our ambitions for the town. Its significance will be far reaching and deliver benefits out to the county, the wider region, nationally and beyond. It will also bring education opportunities, career paths and homes to residents of Cheltenham now and into the future.”  

Ruth Dooley, Chair of GFirst LEP and Partner at Hazlewoods, commented: “I am delighted to hear HBD X Factory has been formally appointed as the development partner for The Golden Valley Development. Our investment of £23.6million into the West Cheltenham Transport Improvement Scheme was the largest of all our project investments and acts as the key to unlock the potential for The Golden Valley Development - as the home of cyber for the UK. GFirst LEP is proud to support this innovative development which will shape the future of Gloucestershire and the wider Western Gateway.”

Sustainability will be a key element of the huge new project, which will target Net Zero Carbon. Smart technology coupled with innovative design and MMC will cut energy output and carbon impact across both the residential and commercial elements of the development. 

The project has received funding from local and national government bodies, including £23.6 million investment from GFirst LEP to improve transport infrastructure surrounding the Golden Valley Development site. Also, the Council has a further £180 million funding available for the delivery of high-quality homes. £37.5 million was used by Cheltenham Borough Council to fund the purchase of the land alongside £249 million of Government investment being delivered by Gloucestershire County Council. 

The project’s success to-date has been founded on strong collaborative working. The site includes the direct involvement of three local authorities Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Borough Councils and Gloucestershire County Council, as well as the strong support of the GFirst LEP.

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