Over the past 18 months, and particularly through the launch of our Towns and Local Centres Framework in March 2019, GBSLEP has provided revenue funding to support the development of numerous projects aimed at laying the foundations for the places of the future. This funding aims to create places where people want to visit, work and live, enabling visions for the future of our towns and local centres through masterplans, studies that identify issues concerning connectivity and accessibility and action plans that will deliver activities to support local businesses and enhance local offers.
Projects we have supported include a connectivity and accessibility study in the Soho Road, Birmingham Business Improvement District (BID) area, a prospectus for Cannock Chase identifying investment and development opportunities and more recently a study which will update the growth plan for Shirley Town Centre.
In our Strategic Economic Plan (SEP), we set out the objective to ‘develop thriving towns and local centres’ recognising that, whilst Birmingham as a regional core city provides a natural focal point for increasing growth and investment, the surrounding towns and local centres also form a crucial part of the economic fabric of the region. However, our town and local centres face challenges to their competitiveness as they make the transition from a retail dominated core to wider social hubs that can offer a variety of opportunities including leisure, culture, and residential.
We have therefore developed a Towns and Local Centres (TLC) Framework that takes a co-ordinated view of regeneration activity in towns and local centres across the GBSLEP area, ensuring maximum benefit from the range of projects being delivered, and thereby helping to deliver the growth ambitions set out in the SEP. This approach recognises the GBSLEP area as an eco-system: whilst Birmingham is the focal point, the surrounding towns and local centres provide distinct, complementary, and supporting offers to the city centre.
Download the TLC Framework Executive Summary here.
Download the TLC Framework technical report here.
Technical report aimed primarily at practitioners.