Rio kicks off housing initiative


Rio Ferdinand

MIPIM 2016: Former England captain Rio Ferdinand and Brandon Lewis, minister of state for housing and planning, are launching their affordable housing venture at MIPIM 2016.

The duo are hosting a briefing in Cannes on Thursday afternoon to launch “Legacy”. At the event, Ferdinand will outline his vision for building communities and regenerating existing estates in partnership with UK local authorities.

The Legacy developments will have sports academies at their heart. Ferdinand grew up on a council estate in Peckham and the projects will focus on deprived regions and areas where the need for affordable housing is greatest.

The initiative will be run by a charity called the Legacy Foundation. A deal is already in progress with local authorities for 1,800 homes in Newham, east London and 1,100 homes in Bedford, Bedfordshire.

The former footballer is working with fellow footballers Bobby Zamora and Mark Noble, as well as Colliers International, Aviva Investors and McLaren. Zamora and Noble are expected at MIPIM on Wednesday, ahead of Ferdinand’s briefing.

Although Ferdinand’s project differs from property schemes backed by his former teammates, he is the latest Manchester United player to move into property.

Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville launched Hotel Football next to Manchester United’s Old Trafford ground earlier this year. They have also developed Café Football and are working with Singapore-listed development company Rowsley and Beijing Construction and Engineering Group to deliver the 500,000 sq ft Bootle Street project in Manchester.

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