FUNDING has been approved for all future phases of a flagship regeneration project in Taunton.

Somerset West and Taunton Council (SWT) approved the funding for the North Taunton Woolaway Project at a special Full Council meeting on Thursday, December 3.

The regeneration project will be completed in five phases over 10 years at a total cost of an estimated £45m – with £8.7m being earmarked for Phase A.

Phase A of the project started earlier this year, with the demolition of 26 homes, and the building of 47 new homes is set to be completed in September 2022.

READ MORE: Demolition of North Taunton Woolaway Houses begins

Phases B to E includes demolishing 136 homes and building 180 new homes, along with a community facility.

This is estimated to be completed by November 2027.

A total of 227 new homes will be delivered, all at affordable rents.

SWT have said the funding will ensure a “smooth transition between phases” and “quicken the pace” of the project.

Executive member for housing, Cllr Fran Smith, said: “The approval of these recommendations will assist the next phases of the project.

“It will provide certainty and security to the North Taunton Woolaway Project tenants.

“Not only is this a significant step toward zero carbon using renewable heat and power, but it forms an essential part of our commitment in offering a choice of good quality housing for our residents.

“It significantly increases the number of affordable and social homes in Taunton and it will be inclusive; catering for single occupiers, families, vulnerable and elderly people.”

Somerset County Gazette: Plans for the new Woolaway homes in TauntonPlans for the new Woolaway homes in Taunton

The existing council tenants have been offered the right to return to an equivalent size property in the new scheme.

The homes will have between one and five bedrooms, and nine will adapted for wheelchair use.

They will be energy efficient and built to low carbon standards. A new round of consultation is set to start, aimed at replacing proposals for gas heating with renewable on-site heat and power.

Electric vehicle charging points will be provided in private driveways and communal spaces.