Sta­dium, bridge and jobs plan un­veiled

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - UK&WORLD UPDATE - By ADAM UREN

AM­BI­TIOUS plans to cre­ate 5,000 jobs, re­build Peter­bor­ough United’s sta­dium and re­vamp the river­side are among the key projects needed to re­vi­talise the city, busi­ness VIPs were told yes­ter­day.

The vi­sion was re­vealed by re­gen­er­a­tion ex­pert David Tay­lor at Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil’s Growth Con­fer­ence, among them his hopes to launch an in­ter­na­tional de­sign com­pe­ti­tion to build a new foot­bridge to link the Em­bank­ment with the River Nene’s south bank.

Re­fer­ring to Peter­bor­ough as a city that “punches be­low its weight”, Mr Tay­lor said the city cen­tre was poorly ar­ranged and expressed a de­sire to get rid of the Bourges Boule­vard dual-car­riage­way to make it more pedes­trian friendly.

He said: “It is my con­tention that Peter­bor­ough is a city that punches well be­low its weight, and that it’s a city whose best as­sets are also its biggest li­a­bil­i­ties.

“Its as­sets in­clude the rail­way line, its road sys­tem and the River Nene, but they bi­sect the city which seperates the city into quar­ters as op­posed to it be­ing whole.

“We need to change this and de- liv­ery, de­liv­ery, de­liv­ery is the key way to bring this about. Noth­ing suc­ceeds like suc­cess.”

Peter­bor­ough De­liv­ery Part­ner­ship (PDP), for whom Mr Tay­lor is work­ing, said the Sta­tion Quar­ter re­vamp will be hope­fully used to lure 5,000 Govern­ment jobs, which are set to be moved out of London.

And Mr Tay­lor, who mas­ter­minded the build­ing of the City of Manch­ester Sta­dium and is on the Olympics 2012 devel­op­ment com­mit­tee, said plans were mov­ing quickly to trans­form the London Road foot­ball ground into a com­mu­nity sta­dium.

A pro­posal un­veiled at the con­fer­ence stated one of the stands would be re­built from “the bot­tom up”, see­ing an ed­u­ca­tion fa­cil­ity cre­ated in one of the stands.

Mr Tay­lor also said talks were tak­ing place with re­tailer Asda about a po­ten­tial move from its store in River­gate, so that more prop­er­ties fac­ing onto the river could be built in the fu­ture.

The projects would be funded with help from the cre­ation of a pub­lic limited com­pany called Com­mu­nites and Prov­i­dent, which would ap­proach long-term in­vest­ment com­pa­nies such as pen­sion firms and in­sur­ances com­pa­nies on be­half of PDP and the city coun­cil.

The blue­print for the city was warmly re­ceived by busi­ness rep­re­sen­ta­tives and lo­cal dig­ni­taries alike, with Peter­bor­ough MP Ste­wart Jack­son say­ing: “It’s pos­i­tive to see the pub­lic and pri­vate sec­tors work­ing to­gether to bring the city out of the re­ces­sion.”

John Bridge, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Peter­bor­ough Cham­ber of Com­merce, said he was en­cour­aged by the 80 po­ten­tial in­vestors who turned up for the con­fer­ence and en­cour­aged by the bold vi­sion for the city.

He said: “If we were plan­ning our city now it wouldn’t look like what it does, so we have got to look at what her­itage we leave be­hind.”

At the start of the con­fer­ence, coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive Gillian Beasley re­vealed it would still be look­ing to build 25,000 homes by 2026, de­spite the Govern­ment scrap­ping Re­gional Spa­tial Strate­gies from which the tar­get orig­i­nated.

Coun­cil leader Marco Cer­este agreed, say­ing ev­ery new house brings fur­ther fund­ing to the lo­cal econ­omy. Write to The Evening Tele­graph, 57 Pri­est­gate, Peter­bor­ough PE1 1JW, text PETCOM and your mes­sage to 81800, email ete­d­i­tor@pe­ter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk, or on­line at pe­ter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk

Pic­ture: DAVID LOWN­DES

VI­SION: Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil leader Marco Cer­este (left) with English Part­ner­ship’s David Tay­lor over­look­ing Bourges Boule­vard, which could be al­tered if new vi­sions for Peter­bor­ough city cen­tre be­come a re­al­ity. (METP-17-06-10DL041)

Pic­ture: DAVID LOWN­DES

TOP TALK: (From left) An­drew Ed­wards, David Tay­lor, Ben Tice­hurst, Gavin Elsey, Keith Bayliss, Richard As­tle and Gillian Beasley at the con­fer­ence. (METP-17-06-10DL003)

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