The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) published its final recommendations to Government on the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford Arc (read here).
Partnering for Prosperity: a new deal for the Cambridge – Milton Keynes – Oxford Arc highlights opportunities to create well-designed, well-connected new communities, and deliver one million new homes and jobs in the area by 2050, adding an extra £160bn per year to the national economy.
SEMLEP, Local Businesses and Councils in the South East Midlands have responded with their comments on the newly released report:
Dr Ann Limb CBE DL, Chair of SEMLEP: “We welcome the Commission’s report that recognises the Oxford – Milton Keynes – Cambridge growth area as one of the most economically important parts of the country. As a £50bn, fast growing economy, SEMLEP has identified priorities to grow businesses, grow people and grow places to ensure that our economy remains highly productive, resilient and continues to stimulate innovation to deliver growth. Maximising the opportunities that will result from stronger East-West links is integral to helping us to achieve our vision of the South East Midlands as the commercial core of the Growth Corridor.”
Pete Winkelman, Chairman of MK Dons/Stadium MK: “I am fortunate to live in the most successful new town in the UK, the direct result of forward planning and infrastructure investment, and I am excited that this nationally significant report recognises the pivotal role Milton Keynes can play in the future as we look to leverage our expertise in delivering new communities across the Oxford-Cambridge arc. The MK: Futures Commission, of which I was a Commissioner, identified improved transport infrastructure as absolutely key to achieve the step change needed in delivery and by implementing the recommendations of the National Infrastructure Commission the full potential of Milton Keynes and the vibrant region in which it sits can be realised"
David Bell, CEO of SBD Automotive: “As we continue to grow in automotive technology research worldwide, we are constantly looking to recruit more of the industry’s best engineers, as well as the next generation of talent that will help shape SBD Automotive in the future. The linking of these hubs of innovation, and the increased access to talent pools and universities, will likely create a globally acknowledged tech corridor that will act as a magnet for new investment and jobs."
Ben McDonald, Senior Partner for Milton Keynes of KPMG: "My ambition is to have an advisory team in Milton Keynes that is brilliant for our people and for businesses in the area. The long-term sustainable improvements and investments announced today will continue to make Milton Keynes and the surrounding towns a fantastic place to work, but we need to work together to fully realise the latent potential in the region. We must follow Lord Adonis’ call to ‘seize the opportunity’"
Alex Burns, President of Millbrook said: “I am delighted that the NIC has recognised the strength of the Oxford – Milton Keynes – Cambridge arc. It is a vibrant high-technology cluster with a particular focus on developing the future of transportation. At Millbrook we are investing heavily in new test facilities for the development of low carbon, low emission, connected and autonomous vehicles. Our business growth is currently constrained by our ability to relocate talented individuals to the area and this new deal has the potential to solve housing and transport infrastructure issues. This could add significantly to the capacity of the area for economic growth.”
Councillor James Jamieson, Leader of Central Bedfordshire Council: “We have already delivered spectacular levels of economic growth in Central Bedfordshire. We are committed to realising the economic potential of our area and sustainable growth. We agree with the Commission’s views that development should not be to the detriment of existing communities and to ensure this we need investment in critical infrastructure up front.”
Leader of Milton Keynes Council Cllr Pete Marland: “We welcome the National Infrastructure Commission’s view that Milton Keynes should once again become a project of national significance. We also strongly support the recommendation that to enable growth, local authorities require certainty on the timing and funding for infrastructure delivery.