Out-Law News 1 min. read

Property owners to be given greater role in revitalising high streets

The role of property owners in business improvement district (BID) schemes will be formalised under new regulations due to come into force in October, UK high streets minister Brandon Lewis has announced. 

Following a consultation launched by the Department for Communities and Local Government in July last year, Lewis has announced new measures which will allow property owners to be part of BIDs "where there is local agreement".

Under existing rules, only business occupiers can formally establish a BID. The new scheme would extend this to landlords and property owners "working together in a local area to involve more local people, increase funding and boost support for regeneration projects".

Lewis said that the measure would be piloted in London, where it had been met with support by a "range of London businesses, local authorities, and the BID industry".

"Bringing property owners into BIDs means they can contribute to the plan and take into consideration a different perspective, including for unoccupied premises," said Lewis.

The move was welcomed by the British Property Federation (BPF). “By including landlords in BIDs, high streets will benefit from more funding, increased investment and the long-term perspective that a property owner can bring," said BPF director of policy Ian Fletcher in a statement.

“There has been strong cross-sector support for this change as landlords play a hugely important part in a healthy high street and it is encouraging to see that government has recognised this."

“We look forward to working with government to get the necessary legislation in place for London, and after that to get new legislation in place that will extend this model to BIDs around the country,” Fletcher added.

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