Stephen Wilkinson, RTPI President, saw how planners are helping to support economic growth across the East of England during a visit with members last week.
A tour with Great Yarmouth Borough Council, focused on partnership work to capture new jobs and growth in the area. Stephen saw how the council is working proactively with partners across the public and private sectors to support growth and job-creation.
"A strategic approach to planning and economic development is critical to deliver balanced and coordinated economic growth. I was pleased to see how the council uses local development orders to support inward investment. The council is also working with the Local Enterprise Partnership , County Council, Port and others, allowing the council's planners to maximise opportunities for sustainable growth, regeneration and job-creation."
His visit came at a unique time for the borough. The Outer Harbour supporting simultaneously, for the first time, a large-scale offshore wind project and a major decommissioning project, represent major growth areas for the borough.
He also visited Great Yarmouth town centre and heard about the Town Centre Masterplan, a vision to enhance the historic town centre for the 21st century as a destination where people choose to live, work, invest and spend their leisure time.
Quadram Institute, Norwich
In Norfolk, at the Norwich Research Park, Stephen saw how the construction of the new Quadram Institute is progressing (right). Due to open in mid 2018, it will be a new world-leading research facility for biosciences.
“I was impressed by the work of the local planning teams to support the development of the Norwich Research Park through master planning. The Park is a high quality environment for important growth sectors in the economy.
“The Quadram building is an exemplar of high quality design which integrates the needs of patient care with clinical research.”
In the evening, Stephen met with members and young planners, hosted by the Broads Authority and Lanpro Services.
Read: Award winning planning features in President’s South West visit