Birmingham levels upgrade targets and boost economy by £ 9bn
Birmingham City Council has placed a pioneering partnership to renovate 166,000 social housing units at the center of its ‘supply’ to ministers to bring the city up to standard.
Yesterday, senior council officials visited parliament to unveil a plan to seize the upgrade initiative built around five “accelerators” in which it seeks support from the central government to achieve “radical change” through programs aimed at reducing poverty and creating new opportunities in the city.
The city’s upgrading strategy says increasing economic activity, employment and skills above the UK average would add £ 9billion to its economy and lead to the creation of 75,000 jobs .
The council asked:
- single and territorial funding and new devolved powers
- using impoverished East Birmingham as a ‘local service delivery model demonstrator’ to launch ‘invest to save’ funding models
- government support for the city’s early intervention and prevention approach
- investment in infrastructure to improve transport
- a massive social housing renovation program to reduce carbon emissions.
Birmingham has revealed that it has partnered with Coventry and Wolverhampton city councils to renovate social housing. The three cities together have 166,000 social housing units – including 61,000 social housing units in Birmingham alone – and believe that the scale of the work required “provides critical mass”, which can help develop the market for such projects and influence funding models for such work elsewhere.
Deputy Head of Council Brigid Jones (Lab) said the home improvement program “will create greener jobs, reduce carbon emissions and provide our citizens with warmer homes … by working hand in hand with local manufacturers ”.
She added that this would demonstrate the “real power of inclusive growth” and allow the city to demonstrate its learnings nationally and globally.
“Birmingham was of course the beating heart of the Industrial Revolution and we are determined to be at the heart of the Green Industrial Revolution,” she said.
Referring to the upcoming white paper on the upgrade, Birmingham leader Ian Ward (Lab) said: “Our offer today is to collaborate and work with the government to ensure that the upgrade is a success. success – a successful Birmingham and a successful UK. “
Cllr Ward said leveling was important for Birmingham as 40% of its children grow up in poverty while there was a ten-year gap in life expectancy between wealthier neighborhoods and parts of it east of town.
“We know there is no commonly accepted national definition of leveling up, so we sought to define the Birmingham themes,” he said.
“We believe that taking it to the next level means increasing the pace and scale of growth in an inclusive manner. Thus, all people and places benefit, seeking bottom-up empowerment of communities and citizens, not a one-size-fits-all solution.
“This means improving public services and social infrastructure, as well as digital and green transport infrastructure. Most importantly, we need to improve outcomes and opportunities for all citizens and all parts of our city. “