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Greater Birmingham makes another top 10

Greater Birmingham makes another top 10

🕔27.Jan 2015

More than 30 major UK and international institutional investors learned about Greater Birmingham’s offer at the government’s inaugural ‘Investment into Cities’ event, held at 10 Downing Street earlier today.

A delegation of civic and business leaders discussed schemes available to investors in Greater Birmingham and Solihull, which attracted more foreign direct investment projects than any other region last year. The presentation concentrated on schemes including Icknield Port Loop and UK Central – as well as the Snow Hill and Southern Gateway areas of the city.

The event aimed to secure investment for major projects that will help to rebalance the wider UK economy away from London and the South East. It was chaired by Commercial Secretary to the Treasury Lord Deighton and addressed by Minister for Cities, Greg Clark. Representatives from Bristol and Leeds also took part.

The Greater Birmingham team comprised Andy Street, Chair of the Greater Birmingham & Solihull LEP; Sir Albert Bore, Leader of Birmingham City Council; Neil Rami, Chief Executive of Marketing Birmingham; and Waheed Nazir, Director of Planning and Regeneration at Birmingham City Council.

The investment event is the latest in a run of positive headlines for the city region in 2015, with Greater Birmingham scoring notable achievements in the number young professionals choosing the area as they depart the capital; for business start ups as well as inward investment. National, business and tourism media have marked out Birmingham as the place to visit as the city prepares for a string of openings and anniversaries. Investment potential will also be highlighted at the forthcoming MIPIM real estate fair in Cannes.

Legal & General, one of the investors attending the No 10 event, also announced a new regeneration vehicle to provide investment into UK projects including housing and infrastructure. It is allocating £1.5bn to the vehicle and, working alongside investment partners, plans to secure further external funding up to £15bn.

Sir Albert Bore, leader of Birmingham City Council, commented:

Birmingham is emerging as a global investment destination. The city is one of Europe’s brightest property hotspots, and has some of the biggest investment opportunities anywhere in Britain. We have already proved that Birmingham can deliver world-class property and infrastructure projects. Just look at the £600m redevelopment of New Street station, £200m expansion of Birmingham Airport, and regeneration of the Curzon area around the city centre’s HS2 terminal. This unprecedented scale of investment is transforming Birmingham – making the city unrecognisable from a decade ago.

Birmingham is a city on the rise. People and businesses are flocking here. We are Britain’s capital of enterprise and innovation. And we are at the centre of the world’s biggest high speed rail project, HS2, which is a magnet for investment. Demand for Birmingham’s office space, leisure space and residential property has never been higher.

The schemes presented at Downing Street comprised a variety of commercial, leisure and residential opportunities across Greater Birmingham. This included the residential-led Icknield Port Loop site, which will become a mixed-use neighbourhood in Birmingham comprising 1,150 new homes and 75,000 sq ft of retail and commercial floorspace.

Andy Street, Chair of the Greater Birmingham & Solihull LEP, added:

Greater Birmingham is at the forefront of delivering economic growth in the UK’s regions, with record foreign direct investment figures and investors ploughing £1.04 billion into its property market during 2014, a 19% increase from the previous year.

What we’ve been able to demonstrate at Downing Street today is that this area has the scale and diversity that investors are seeking.

Long-term investment opportunities in the region include UK Central in Solihull, home to Birmingham Airport and Jaguar Land Rover, and the site of the West Midlands’ proposed new High Speed Rail Interchange.

Nick Page, Chief Executive of Solihull Council, said:

Today’s event gave us the chance to further raise the profile of UK Central, one of Europe’s largest, most exciting development opportunities. The scheme brings together Solihull’s world class business, transport and entertainment assets alongside the borough’s reputation as an outstanding place to live and work.

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