The latest Director’s Blog
Remarkably this month marks five years since the City Deal agreement was signed by the partnership of eight councils with the UK and Scottish Governments.
We still remain the largest City Deal in Scotland and by far one of the largest in the UK, in terms of government funding, with £500 million investment from each of the UK and Scottish Governments.
In the period since we kicked off our Deal, we continue to make significant progress – in the delivery of projects and in tangible benefits these are already bringing to the Region – and also in the partnership’s ambitions for economic growth.
Almost all of our infrastructure projects are underway to one extent or another or completed and all six of our employability, innovation and business growth projects are completed.*
Thousands of jobs have already been created through the City Deal employability schemes and construction work underway. And local companies and residents continue to benefit from City Deal contract opportunities. Latest figures show local companies winning over £33 million worth of City Deal contracts and over 600 community benefit opportunities have been realised for jobs, apprenticeships and work experience for local residents through contracts.
Strong foundations have been established by the partnership of eight councils, in terms of our ambitions, joint working and our governance. And we’ve built on these in a big way.
We’re using City Deal funding coupled with other investment as a transformative catalyst for growth. Our three Innovation Districts are underpinned by City Deal investment and are setting Glasgow City Region apart as an City Region of Innovation.
Our joint Councils Share Vision for Jobs, Skills and Inclusive Growth, launched in 2017, sets out ambitious plans for growth, with targets for jobs, skills, new homes, businesses, improvements in qualification and plans to bring thousands of hectares of vacant land back into use. This will be refreshed in the next 12 months, to take account of fast-paced change, the uncertainty of Brexit and also extensive work completed on the Regional Strategic Assessment – a detailed individual and collective analysis of the economic performance of the Region and the eight local authority areas that make up the Region.
Our Regional Partnership brings our together our eight councils with the UK and Scottish governments, local and national agencies, the private and academic sectors and provides an opportunity and focus to deliver genuine inclusive growth across the whole region. In the past year we’ve launched a new regional plan for Skills, established a forum to work with the Region’s key Utility companies and developed plans for growing the number of tourists visiting the Region.
In the next six months, we will go through our first Gateway Review. Funding from the UK and Scottish Governments is unlocked in five-year blocks, subject to the City Deal delivering agreed outputs and outcomes. The first Gateway Review which involves an independent evaluation of our progress to date will be completed by December 2019 and then assessed by our government partners to release the next tranche of £250 million in funding.
We remain confident that we are well on track and look forward to building on all that we have achieved to date.
*Projects completed so far are Medicity, Tontine, Cathkin Relief Road, Imaging Centre of Excellence, Youth Gateway, In Work Progression and Working Matters. Completed sub-projects are Crossmill Business Park, Newton Farm Primary School, Sighthill Remediation Contract 1, Newton Park and Ride and Glenboig Link Road.