Manchester City Council

Investment and Infrastructure

First meeting this morning was the Greater Manchester Investment Board, chaired by Kieran Quinn, Leader of Tameside, who leads for the Combined Authority on investment. The CA and the Local Enterprise Partnership between them control a number of funds that together make up the Greater Manchester Investment Fund with the money coming from the European Union, Central Government, Councils, the private sector, and recycled loans i.e interest and repaid capital. Some of the funds invest in businesses, in a range of anything from £500 for startups to several million for larger growing companies. Other funds invest in development and this year has seen a new £300m housing fund. Most of these are recyclable funds and the intention is for them to be invested several times over the next decade saving and creating jobs all along the way.

Later today I'm meeting Andrew Adonis, me in my role as interim chair of Transport for the North, him in his new role as Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission. On top of HS2, the North will be looking for a number of major investments over the next 10/15 years including a new tunnelled road link between Manchester and Sheffield, a new four track trans-pennine railway line linking to HS2 on both sides of the Pennines, and a new Liverpool - Manchester Airport - Manchester railway line again linked to HS2 and the new trans-pennine line. If the National Infrastructure Commission is to serve a real purpose it needs to work with us to deliver these schemes in a timely and efficient fashion.

In between I'll be meeting Sue Woodward the creative force behind the Sharp Project and the Space Project, which have brought new life and jobs to Newton Heath and West Gorton respectively. The Space Project is still very new but is already so successful that we are aiming to expand it, but we also want to ensure it compliments other parts of the TV/film industry in the city and it already has a good working arrangement with Dock 10, Media City's studio complex, facilitated by a dedicated fibre connection between the two locations.


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The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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