Liverpool and Manchester join forces for £50bn Atlantic Gateway scheme
Mar 16 2010
by Alan Weston, Liverpool Daily Post
THE historic rivalry between Liverpool and Manchester should be buried if the region as a whole is to prosper, according to a new blueprint for economic growth.
Leaders from both cities agreed to join forces behind a major £50bn strategy which would see Liverpool turned into a world superport as part of an ambitious project to make the north-west an economic zone of international significance.
If realised, the Atlantic Gateway scheme could deliver 250,000 new jobs and 400,000 new homes by 2030, and establish an area of economic growth second only to London in the UK.
Peel Holdings’ Atlantic Gateway vision for the River Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal was first launched as a concept in 2008.
Representatives from all the areas affected have now agreed to work with the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) to turn the strategy into reality.
It crosses several local authority boundaries and includes 12 large projects including Runcorn Waterfront, Liverpool and Wirral Waters, Royal Seaforth Post-Panamax Container Terminal, Liverpool International Business Park (Speke Garston), Liverpool John Lennon Airport, Port Salford, Salford Forest Park, Media City UK, Ellesmere Quays, Port Wirral and Port Warrington, Trafford Quays, Trafford Wharfside and Salford Quays.
The scheme envisions berths for ships too big to use the Panama Canal being built at Mersey Docks and along the 44-mile Manchester Ship Canal, at Wirral, Ellesmere Port, Warrington and Salford.
Councillor Flo Clucas, deputy leader of Liverpool City Council, said: “The Atlantic Gateway shows the way forward for the Liverpool and Manchester City regions.
“Rather than being seen as rivals, this framework brings together these city regions with the potential for unrivalled and sustainable economic growth. Together we can become not only one of Europe’s leading economic regions but a global force.”
NWDA chief executive Steven Broomhead added: “Atlantic Gateway is a bold and innovative collaboration across and between city regions to create a growth area which will rank among Europe’s strongest urban economies.”