Manchester City Council outlines recovery plan

Manchester City Council is seeking government funding under a recovery plan it has launched with the support of business leaders.

The council is seeking a total investment of £798.8m to fund four propositions it called “game changing”, and which covers 50 projects, under its ‘powering recovery: Manchester’s recovery and investment plan’.

The four propositions include one focused on ‘innovation’, which would see the creation of a “new world-leading innovation district”, while a proposition for the ‘city centre/urban realm’ would see focused investment in the city centre to help attract further investment.

Meanwhile, the plan’s ‘residential retrofit programme’ is a £260m scheme to retrofit all 68,000 social homes in the city centre.

The council’s ‘North Manchester regeneration’ would see the creation of a new health campus centred around the North Manchester General Hospital, with the largest housing development in the north, alongside more than 15,000 new homes – with a target of 20 per cent affordable – being brought forward through the Northern Gateway scheme.

The plan has two main elements, the council said, being early action and long-term investment programmes in key sectors.

Early action aims to ‘cushion’ the impact of pandemic downturn, with the council envisaging a two-year, £36m per year programme to provide support to 12,000 people in total.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said its ambitions “for a more inclusive and greener economy are undiminished”.

“If anything, it has become more important that we work with partners to deliver them even more rapidly,” he said.

“We recognise that there are people and businesses who have been badly affected by the economic downturn and are doing everything in our power to cushion the worst impacts.

“Yet even amid these challenges there are grounds for real belief in the prospects for a strong recovery.”

He added: “Manchester has both the foundations and building blocks in place to re-establish its previous momentum as the UK’s premier growth city.

“As well as an array of business talent, we have a pipeline of game-changing projects with the potential to power the recovery.

“This is a city ready and able to play a leading role in the agenda to ‘level up’ the country’s economy.”

Bruntwood chief executive Chris Oglesby added: “Manchester has come a long way over the last 30 years and Covid has really accelerated the need for us to move forwards.

“We have to balance honesty about the challenges with justifiable confidence in the future.”

Business Live – North West

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