July’s West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) meeting welcomed confirmation that £55m has been approved for projects and programmes agreed as part of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP’s) Growth Deal with government.
One year on from the announcement of the £1 billion-plus Growth Deal for Leeds City Region, 14 projects are being developed. Between them they are expected to create over 5,000 jobs and more than 1,700 homes. They have also attracted almost £350m private sector investment.
All of these Leeds City Region Growth Deal projects have been designed to support the LEP and Combined Authority’s priorities to improve local transport links, accelerate housing growth and town centre regeneration, develop a skilled and flexible workforce, support growing businesses and build a resource efficient city region. They have each been subjected to a rigorous appraisal process to ensure they fit with the ambition set out in the region’s Strategic Economic Plan and deliver jobs and growth for businesses and residents.
Councillor Peter Box, and Wakefield Council Leader and Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority said: “West Yorkshire Combined Authority is committed to creating an environment that encourages businesses to grow, that creates 62,000 new, good quality jobs, enables all young people to find job and training opportunities and supports the building of 65,000 new homes in the next five years.
“These 14 projects, which are in various stages of development, will all help to make those ambitions a reality for people across the City Region.”
Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the LEP said: “One momentous year after our Growth Deal announcement we have made real progress on delivering, at scale, the projects and programmes to achieve transformational economic growth.
“Having been through a thorough appraisal process, we are confident these projects will bring maximum benefits to businesses and residents across the region, further cementing Leeds City Region as a great place to do business and creating an environment for enterprise to thrive.”
Bradford Council Leader and West Yorkshire Combined Authority Investment Committee Chair, Cllr David Green said: “These projects are supporting the creation of thousands of permanent and temporary jobs, the building of almost 2,000 new homes and significant transport improvements to provide the network local residents and businesses need and expect.
“And importantly they are leveraging in millions of pounds of investment from our partners in the private sector, which is a clear sign of the confidence they have in our Growth Deal programme.”
Among the agreed schemes are four skills capital projects, supporting colleges in the region to create a world class learning environment for young people - the first of which starts on site later this week in Kirklees.
The LEP’s successful grant support programme for small and medium sized businesses, has secured a further £18m for the next three years to continue supporting businesses to grow, innovate new products and expand their workforce.
Over £16m has been committed to housing and regeneration projects across the region to deliver the infrastructure for growth. Additionally, £30m a year for major transport projects in the region was secured as part of the historic Growth Deal, with the first project already underway in Wakefield.
This £55m approval of projects forms part of the wider £627m Growth Deal funding secured for 2015-2021.