Regional towns targeted for growth

IPSWICH, Colchester and Chelmsford have all been identified in a new report as potential locations for growth in several key sectors of the regional economy.

IPSWICH, Colchester and Chelmsford have all been identified in a new report as potential locations for growth in several key sectors of the regional economy.

The Strategic Employment Sites Study, commissioned by the East of England Development Agency from consultancy firm Arup, will be used to help promote the region for inward investment and assist both the public and private sectors in maximising the towns' potential.

Ipswich is named as a potential location for growth in financial and businesses services, together with Norwich, Southend and Peterborough, while Colchester is identified as a potential location for both computer/information technology and, together with Peterborough, advanced engineering.

In addition, the Haven Gateway sub-region, including Ipswich and Colchester, is identified as a potential area for expansion in the creative industries while Chelmsford, with Cambridge, Cranfield and Norwich, is named as a possible location for environment technologies and energy.


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“This study provides much-needed evidence on how the region is placed in terms of delivering the strategic employment sites that will be able to accommodate future growth sectors,” said Andy Fisher, principal planning executive at EEDA.

“The results of this work will now be used to promote the region as a place to invest for business and to help regional partners such as local authorities, businesses and local delivery vehicles to maximise the potential value of these strategic employment opportunities.”

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Chris Tunnel, project director at Arup, who completed the study said: “The East of England has high economic growth targets as set out in the Regional Economic Strategy (RES) and reflected in the East of England Plan. This study considers the role of strategic employment sites in meeting these targets and maximising the potential benefits of this growth.

“The identification of strategic employment sites is an important exercise, to ensure that these sites can be promoted and protected from other development pressures, in particular housing, once the economy recovers.”

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