What is the Community Infrastructure Levy?
The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a levy raised on development schemes (new buildings such as housing, hotels or shops).
The money is used by the council to fund local infrastructure projects.
It’s just one of the ways in which developments can benefit the local community and one of the ways in which developers can give-back to the community - especially to those who've been impacted by the building works (such as neighbours who had to put-up with noise or temporary road closures).
Southwark has raised roughly £23m in CIL since 2015. 25 per cent of this - almost £6m - has been designated as local (neighbourhood) CIL and is now available to spend on community projects that can be completed by 31 December 2023.
Living Bankside and CIL
Prior to the local elections in May 2018 no process was in place to distribute the 25 per cent of local (neighbourhood) CIL. Living Bankside campaigned to ensure that a transparent and effective process was in place to ensure Neighbourhood CIL was being allocated to benefit local people.
Living Bankside was successful in its campaign and received a commitment with the then Leader of Southwark Council and subsequently worked with council officers to produce a process for distributing Neighbourhood CIL.
What can the money be spent on?
The money can be spent on one-off projects that will benefit the local community such as refurbishing a community centre or installing new play equipment in a park.
One project which recently benefited from CIL was Surrey Docks Farm.
The farm used money raised from the levy on a housing development nearby at Odessa Street to refurbish their Tower Building so that it could be used by the local community for meetings, workshops and classes.