The leading trade body for the property industry will today publish six recommendations for local Government on how to unlock the economic potential of cities outside London and rebalance the economy.
The series of recommendations will be launched at MIPIM UK and have been produced by the British Property Federation (BPF) following a series of regional roundtables held across the summer in six of the UK’s key City Regions.
The recommendations are:
• Infrastructure: Prioritising the upgrading of strategic infrastructure will help provide the catalyst for wider regeneration and leverage wider private sector activity in cities, ensuring further investment and economic growth.
• Not be caught in constitutional quagmire: Devolution across the country must consider all functions in the whole, from planning and skills to health and design, and not be restrained by issues of constitutional governance, such as elected Mayors.
• Vision: Local authorities should work together to form a clear vision of what they want to achieve and play to the individual strengths and offers of their region.
• Excellence demonstrated through marketing: A strong identity is imperative to attracting inward investment, and areas must market themselves to investors who may not know why an area is worth investing in.
• Strong leadership: Growth needs a champion, whether an elected mayor or otherwise. Areas need a determined leader who will help drive the shared vision and articulate it clearly to potential investors, providing a focus point with which to engage.
• Tenure of housing: It is important that areas have the right, as this will attract and retain a new generation of workers, who in turn attract occupiers and investment to an area.
Melanie Leech, Chief Executive of the BPF, said: “There is a considerable capital, both domestic and international, that is looking to invest beyond London and move into the regions. Combined with the current devolution agenda, this offers the UK’s major cities a unique chance to market themselves and create sustainable growth, and offers central Government a golden opportunity to balance the economy.
“There is a shared responsibility between local and combined authorities, central government and the private sector to create the environment that will attract investment and unlock growth, and today’s recommendations are designed to support central and local Government as they play their part in creating places where people want to live, work and play.”