The Midlands UK delegation has showcased the major development opportunities in place to capitalise on High Speed Two (HS2), to key Government ministers as part of its unprecedented programme of events at MIPIM 2017.
Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG – Commercial Secretary to the Treasury and Mark Garnier MP – Parliamentary under Secretary of State, joined representatives from the Greater Birmingham and surrounding Midlands regions for an afternoon of presentations and panel discussions highlighting the economic potential of HS2.
Commenting at the Midlands UK Pavilion, Mark Garnier MP, said:
“What this Pavilion has brought together with the Midlands Engine, is a really strong message that the Midlands is one unit – one region.
It is coming together to work out how it can bring the connectivity together, how it can bring the skills together, how it can bring in the investment, and how it can make a huge amount of difference to 10 million people’s lives who live in the Midlands Engine region”
Connectivity remains a key focus for Greater Birmingham, with HS2 – which has now been granted Royal Asset – continuing to attract interest from potential investors around the world.
Events which have took place throughout MIPIM include an update on the development and future plans of HS2 with Mike Lyons, Programme Director at HS2 Ltd; a discussion about how HS2 will drive economic growth and rebuild the national economy; and a debate on how the scheme will affect employment, skills, innovation and productivity across the Midlands.
The effect HS2 will have on Birmingham city centre was also discussed by Liz Peace, Chair of the Curzon Urban Regeneration Company.
UK Central Solihull’s HS2 Interchange station will be located at The Hub – a concentration of economic assets and development opportunities including Birmingham Airport, the National Exhibition Centre, Jaguar Land Rover and Arden Cross.
The Hub’s Growth and Infrastructure Plan, launched at MIPIM on Wednesday, outlined plans for £1.5 billion of infrastructure investment.
Birmingham Airport is the focus of an event looking at its recent growth and plans for the future. Its chief executive, Paul Kehoe, commented:
“We cannot underestimate the importance of connectivity to the economic performance of Greater Birmingham. Expanding air, rail and road links to and from the region will help to boost trade links, secure more inward investment, welcome new visitors and attract those who want to live in the region long-term”.
Councillor Ian Courts, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Managed Growth at Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council, commented:
“This Growth and Infrastructure Plan allows us to showcase the truly global opportunity that is presented by the Hub.
Growth and development ambitions around the HS2 Interchange and Arden Cross site, in addition to those of Birmingham Airport, the National Exhibition Centre and Jaguar Land Rover combine to create a compelling international investment destination for the worldwide stage.”