William Eichler 07 January 2019

Burnham launches plan to make Greater Manchester an ‘ambitious hub’

Greater Manchester’s leaders are today announcing ‘radical plans’ to deliver more affordable housing and better transport across the region.

Mayor Andy Burnham will today launch a rewritten version of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF) designed to showcase the region as ‘a confident, ambitious hub’.

The new plan, which the mayor will launch alongside deputy mayors Sir Richard Leese and Bev Hughes, sets a minimum target of 50,000 additional affordable homes – 30,000 of which will be social housing.

It also emphasises the importance of redeveloping brownfield sites rather than green belt land, and reiterates Greater Manchester’s opposition to fracking.

In a UK first, mayoral powers will also be used to regenerate a major town centre. Mayor Burnham will consult with Stockport Council to use a Mayoral Development Corporation to redevelop the town centre.

Greater Manchester’s leaders, including local council chiefs, will also be outlining plans for 65 transport projects that will be completed within the next five years, while stressing their commitment to improving the air quality across the region.

‘In this time of national social and economic uncertainty, and with politics in Westminster paralysed by Brexit, Greater Manchester is taking the initiative and setting out an innovative blueprint to give people, communities and businesses hope and confidence for the future,’ said mayor Burnham.

‘When we consulted people on the first spatial framework, the public were clear that we hadn’t got the balance right. We listened, reflected, and can now present a radical re-write as promised. It also lays the foundations for radical reform in other policy areas such as housing, the environment and transport.

‘Together, we are harnessing the full power of the most advanced devolution deal of any city-region in England for the benefit of our three million residents.

‘And we are putting together the pieces of the jigsaw to reveal the big picture - a Greater Manchester where prosperity, opportunity, health, hope and happiness are widely and fairly shared across all our people and places.’

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