The Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (OxLEP) hosted a round table meeting with the government’s Oxford-Cambridge Corridor champion Iain Stewart – Milton Keynes South MP – at Milton Park’s Innovation Centre yesterday (10 April).
The event brought together a number of key Oxfordshire businesses, to discuss the opportunities the ‘corridor’ could potentially bring, both locally and nationally.
The key focus of the discussion was the National Infrastructure Commission’s report on ‘Partnering for Prosperity: a new deal for the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford arc’. If fully-utilised, the report says that the ‘corridor’ could be a key driver behind the UK economy, acting as a knowledge-intensive cluster, competitive both nationally and globally.
Across the ‘corridor’, the NIC report suggests that one million new homes and jobs could be created across the area by 2050, whilst maintaining consideration for the region’s green belt.
The report also suggests how the ‘corridor’ – or ‘arc’ as it is otherwise referred to – can secure long-term success economically, through infrastructure and housing improvements.
This includes the possibility of new powers being given to councils, allowing them to raise finance for major infrastructure improvements that deliver new homes.
Nigel Tipple said: “The ‘corridor’ has real global potential and ensures the world’s two most-prominent university cities benefit from an infrastructure that – not only ensures great connectivity – but allows the region’s global research, innovation and technology strengths to flourish and become a backbone for the UK economy’s worldwide performance.
“It is important to ensure businesses across the ‘corridor’ understand the opportunities it could bring them.”
Philip Campbell, Commercial Director at MEPC – whose assets include Milton Park – added: “We were delighted to host today’s event. It was good to have the opportunity to meet Iain Stewart MP, Chair of the APPG to discuss the economic potential of the Oxford-Milton Keynes- Cambridge-corridor . And the ways in which it could really help to address Oxfordshire’s infrastructure challenges.”