NICK Clegg today spoke to the Echo about City Deal status and what it will mean to the city:
“The benefits on the employment front are very significant. More than 5,000 manufacturing jobs, a further 3,700 planned in the long-term.”
On helping Sunderland’s young people:
“The International Advanced Manufacturing Park will provide massive opportunities for Sunderland’s young workers.
“The aim is to make sure they don’t have to go elsewhere to find work; the ability to get the skills they need will be on their doorstep.”
On the council’s decision to scrap the “iconic” Wear Bridge in favour of the cheaper road crossing:
“It’s sensible that a more pragmatic rather than aesthetic approach to a new bridge over the Wear. It will quickly be seen as the right decision.”
On the city centre and Vaux site:
“Part of the City Deal is to help breathe new life into the old brewery site (Vaux site) in the city centre.
“It’s important that people know these improvements in the manufacturing sector will be echoed by a real rejuvenation of the city centre.”
“Sunderland and the North East has a way to go to recover from the huge calamity our economy suffered in 2008.
“We need to make sure the city’s economy is a balance of public and private industry.”
On councils across the North East working together:
“The new North East combined authority will be working together, particularly focusing on job creation, investment and transport issues in the area.
“The North East is all connected now.”
On the North/South divide:
“What we are doing here is designed to close the North/South divide.
“The North should not have to go to Whitehall with a begging bowl.”