Dozens of roads projects will get off the ground after the government agreed a series of growth deals with businesses and local authorities across England.
£12 billion will go towards providing support for local businesses to train young people, create thousands of new jobs, build thousands of new homes and start hundreds of infrastructure projects; including transport improvements and superfast broadband networks.
Today (7 July 2014), the first £6 billion of local projects has been agreed. This includes the complete allocation of £2bn from the Local Growth Fund for 2015 to 2016.
Growth Deals are a revolution in the way our economy is run. For the first time ever, housing, infrastructure and other funding is being brought together in a single pot, and put directly into the hands of local authorities and businesses to spend the way they know best.
Projects beginning in 2015 to 2016 are expected to be matched by local investments worth around twice the contribution from central government. Across the country they are expected to lead to work on more than 150 roads, 150 housing developments and 20 stations, as well as:
- Providing small business support services in every part of England and significant investment in skills training
- Working to improve educational attainment
- Getting more people from welfare to work.
Some of the major projects that will be built as a result of these deals include:
- £18 million to revamp the Metrolink transport system in Manchester, which will include 12 new trams, revamped stations and improved bus services. This is part of a £50 million transport package in Greater Manchester
- £23 million for a new road tunnel linking Swindon to nearby Wichelstowe, creating thousands of jobs and opening up a new site for thousands of homes – this is just one of dozens of road projects which will get off the ground thanks to the Growth Deals the local enterprise partnerships have agreed with the government
- Millions of pounds for projects around the country to boost the skills that local businesses say they need, including £55 million for London’s Skills Capital programme.
Prime Minister David Cameron (pictured) said: “Growth Deals are a crucial part of our long-term plan to secure Britain’s future. For too long our economy has been too London-focused and too centralised. Growth Deals will help change all that. They are about firing up our great cities, towns and counties so they can become powerhouses.
“By trusting local people, backing business and investing in infrastructure, skills and housing, we can create thousands of new jobs. And that means more economic security, peace of mind and a brighter future for hardworking people across the country.”
To view a map showing local enterprise partnerships across England click here.