Stoke Staffs LEP
Northern Gateway opens up growth opportunities
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Northern Gateway opens up growth opportunities

A landmark partnership to promote the investment potential arising from HS2 infrastructure throughout Cheshire and Warrington, Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire is today (March 17) being joined by Housing Minister Brandon Lewis to launch a prospectus of opportunities to investors and developers at MIPIM, the world’s largest property convention.

Launched at MIPIM UK in October 2015 by Baroness Williams and backed by Government, the Northern Gateway Partnership is a ground-breaking collaboration of seven local authorities and the Cheshire and Warrington and Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEP).

It aims to unlock major new growth and investment opportunities which could deliver more than 100,000 new homes and 120,000 new jobs by 2040 by creating a new Growth Zone at the connecting gateway to the Northern Powerhouse and the Midlands Engine.

The prospectus has been developed both to promote the long-term investment benefits that HS2 will bring to the area, spanning Cheshire and the North of Staffordshire including the city of Stoke on Trent, Crewe and the A500 corridor, along with a number of immediately available investment propositions across the Northern Gateway Development Zone. These include the Ceramic Valley Enterprise Zone covering 140 hectares along the strategic A500 Corridor, Keele University Science and Innovation Park, Winsford Industrial Estate and Basford West at Crewe Commercial Park.

These existing opportunities are supported by a range of emerging concepts for investors and enterprise to help shape and influence, ranging from garden villages, town centre investment zones, logistic hubs and science parks, and the Crewe HS2 Hub.

The partners working together to deliver these growth opportunities – which will be framed by a growth strategy and masterplan currently in development –  include the two LEPs, Cheshire East Council, Cheshire West and Chester Council, Newcastle-Under-Lyme Borough Council, Stafford Borough Council, Staffordshire County Council, Staffordshire Moorlands District Council and Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

Christine Gaskell, Chair of Cheshire and Warrington LEP, said: “HS2 is a once in a generation opportunity to become an engine for growth across the UK. Our boundary breaking Northern Gateway Partnership is a firm commitment to work together in a joined up and strategic way, to ensure our area, at the gateway of the Northern Powerhouse and Midland Engine, makes the most of this significant opportunity.

“There are a wide range of exciting investment opportunities available right now, along with a developing portfolio of longer term propositions that have the potential to deliver economic growth on a nationally significant scale.”

Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership chairman David Frost CBE said: “The Northern Gateway presents really exciting opportunities for creating the jobs and economic growth that will enable our region to flourish.

“Its pivotal position linking the Midlands Engine and the Northern Powerhouse means that the Gateway is ideally placed for growth, with a host of highly attractive current and future investment opportunities. And Ministerial backing for our MIPIM launch will be of great assistance in making an impact in the global marketplace.”

Duncan Sutherland, Regeneration Director at Sigma Capital Group plc, commented:  “The Northern Gateway Development Zone is a really exciting development at the heart of the UK economy. Built around superb high speed rail connectivity, positioned at the tipping point for UK plc, midway between the Northern Powerhouse and the Midlands Engine, this is an area rich with potential for enterprise. The Zone provides a broad platform for enterprise, combining a pedigree of well-established world beating brands, innovative cutting edge new materials research and development, a distribution hub second to none and a real passion for new growth without borders. There is an enormous potential for growth in land values and profitability. It’s great to be working with partners and investors with energy and vision on what is fast shaping up to be a premier economic hotspot for UK Plc. It’s no surprise that the Northern Gateway is causing such at stir at MIPIM.”

The Northern Gateway Partnership consists of seven local authorities and two local enterprise partnerships (LEPs):

Cheshire East Council

Stoke-on-Trent City Council

Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council

Staffordshire County Council

Cheshire West and Chester Council

Staffordshire Moorlands District Council

Stafford Borough Council

Cheshire and Warrington LEP

Stoke and Staffordshire LEP