Council eyes road map for future growth

By Laura Payne Thursday 01 November 2012 Updated: 05/11 11:08

AN ESTIMATED 63,000 jobs could be created in the borough if the area fulfils its business potential.

That is the view of Solihull Council which wants to maximise the potential offered by the likes of Birmingham Airport, the NEC, Jaguar Land Rover, Solihull Town Centre and Birmingham Business Park.

The firms have been grouped together under the banner of the M42 Economic Gateway and are already estimated to support over 100,000 jobs and £5.1 billion income.

Council leader Ken Meeson believes the Gateway can drive economic growth in Solihull and the wider region.

He said: "The M42 Economic Gateway project brings tremendous economic opportunities for the borough.

"The council is taking the lead in developing a 'road map' to make sure we manage the growth and ensure it brings the right benefits to Solihull and the region while respecting Solihull's unique character."

A prospectus is currently being developed, led by Arup, to set out how the council and its partners will respond to the pressure and opportunities for growth in a managed way.

And Coun Meeson believes the work will provide a boost for Solihull.

He said: "This is a major piece of work that will really help us to maximise the potential of the M42's connectivity and deliver jobs and prosperity across the wider West Midlands.

"It will also help to build on the borough's reputation as a great place to live, work and invest."

As part of their work creating the prospectus, Arup will work with the council to develop an Implementation and Investment Plan to unlock economic potential while delivering balanced growth for Solihull.

Jerome Frost, director of Arup and Project Director for the study, said: "The M42 Economic Gateway study will build on the very strong base of economic assets and track record of delivery in the corridor to position the Gateway area as one of Britain's premier locations for investment and growth.

"Being located in the Blythe Valley Business Park, Arup has a particular interest in the success of the project."

Visit www.solihullforsuccess.com/business/m42-economic-gateway for more information.

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