Waterfront proposals continue to make progress
Proposals for exciting major new conferencing and events venue continue to make progress.
The Brighton Waterfront project involves proposals for a major new conferencing and events venue for the city on the Black Rock site next to the Marina as well as the proposals for a significant enhancement of the city’s shopping offer through an expansion of Churchill Square shopping centre, taking advantage of the opportunity provided by relocating the city’s main conference venue.
Brighton & Hove city council is continuing to work with its project partners, Standard Life Investments and Venue Ventures, following the Policy & Resources Committee backing of the project in December 2014.
The Council has set up a cross party Project Board to oversee the discussions and Green Party Chairman Cllr Geoffrey Bowden commented: “I’m really excited about the prospects for this project and what it can deliver for the people of the city; recent discussions have firmed up some of the important elements of the project for the council and we anticipate that a formal agreement can be reached. With the elections in May, we realise that there may be different individuals involved but we would strongly recommend the project to our successors and look forward to its delivery.”
Cllr Warren Morgan, Labour group leader and member of the Project Board, commented: “This project has the potential to deliver city-wide benefits as well as regeneration and investment, including new homes, jobs and apprenticeships in areas where it is sorely needed. We’re confident the project is exactly the sort of investment that will help the city continue to thrive and we remain firmly behind it. We’re also confident that the mix of private and public sector investment is the surest way to guarantee delivery.”
Cllr Vanessa Brown, Conservative member of the Project Board, added: “Securing private sector investment to help deliver major investment is the best way to secure the city’s future and its position as the regional capital, as well as to ensure we can compete with the best of the UK’s entertainment and conferencing centres, bringing business and jobs to the city. We are pleased that all parties are supportive of the proposal and welcome the positive way it has been received in the City”.
· The site under consideration for the events venue, next to the Marina, is owned by the council.
· Since the P&R Committee in December, discussions have focused on the form of the agreement that will be required between the partners that will unlock the investment to deliver the project.
· If delivered the new venue would attract a wide range of entertainment and conference events to the City, attracting more visitors and delivering greater economic benefit than the existing Brighton Centre.
· The extended shopping centre would ensure the city is supported in becoming a regional shopping destination, strengthening its position on the south coast and ensuring competing shopping centres do not take away market share.
· Overall, it is estimated that once operational the project would generate approx. 2,000 net new jobs and approx. £150m per annum of net additional expenditure in the city.
· Both sites could also deliver around 450 new homes which would help fund the overall project and reduce the investment required from public sources. Overall the project is aiming to provide up to 25% of the new homes as affordable.
· The project would enable significant regeneration of the city centre and Black Rock areas and improve the Council’s overall financial position through increased Council Tax, New Homes Bonus and Business Rate receipts.
· The Council is considering both day to day and event specific transport options for the development. The proposals will seek to link the station and the existing hotels and tourism infrastructure with the development sites.