More than £1.3billion invested in Sunderland since 2010

Paul Callaghan
Paul Callaghan
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MORE than £1.3bnillion has been invested across Sunderland in the last five years.

The figure was highlighted by city council leader of Council Paul Watson as more details emerged of the city's 3,6,9 Vision.

Coun Paul Watson.

Coun Paul Watson.

A further £1billon is expected in the next five to ten years as part of the Vision.

The vision, from the city's Economic Leadership Board that includes private and public sector representatives, complements the council's own Economic Masterplan that was first published in 2010 and is currently being update for early 2016.

Speaking at the University of Sunderland's FabLab, Coun Watson said: "Central to our evolving strategy is the launch of the 3,6, 9 Vision, providing a blueprint to ensure Sunderland’s future economic success.

"It is presenting a dynamic mix of new projects under way right across the city, as well as an exciting list of things in the pipeline.

"A private and public sector partnership will continue to be essential as we work together to deliver economic growth.

"By working together on these and other projects, we can ensure that collectively we achieve these targets – and even more.

"We must ensure that local residents benefit from the new job opportunities, and have the necessary skills to actively participate in the labour market.

"We must also develop a vibrant and culturally rich city, with major events putting the city firmly on the global map. Securing the Tall Ships Race in 2018 and committing ourselves to bid for UK City of Culture in 2021, are both key ingredients.

"Clearly the city council alone, cannot create jobs and wealth, but it can and will create the conditions for businesses to grow and flourish, from start-ups to SMEs to our large, international companies. All have a significant contribution to make to the city’s economic success, which needs to be underpinned by us seizing every opportunity to invest in the local infrastructure and continuing to ensure that Sunderland is THE place to do business.

"Skills remain a high priority for us – strengthening links between employers, schools and training providers to ensure that our residents can access the jobs available and forge great careers both now and in the future.

"Having weathered the economic storm a lot better than most, Sunderland is very well placed to take advantage of the recovery and I look forward to the council working with partners, businesses and residents to deliver our vision."

The city's economic leadership boards is chaired by Paul Callaghan, who is also chair of the University of Sunderland and the Leighton Group.

"Earlier this year we announced a vision for Sunderland for the next 3, 6 and 9 years and now, following independent economic analysis, we are spelling out the detail," he said.

"These targets for the city, £1billion of investment and 20,000 new jobs by 2024 are credible and realistic and will mean a step change in Sunderland’s economy.

"Some of the investments can already be seen with new Hilton and Premier hotels and the Keel Square developments while others are in the construction phase with the start of the new bridge, the College’s Holmeside Campus and the University’s Enterprise and Innovation Centre.

"We have new jobs being announced in the Automotive Sector, the Engineering Sector, Software and elsewhere. This is credible proof of our city’s ambition and strategic direction and it is coming about through a city-wide partnership with developments happening in our businesses, our University and our College, and not just from the council.

"But there is much more to be done, not least keeping the city on track to deliver these targets. The Economic Leadership Board is continuing to work with partners from all sectors of the city and we will present regular updates to the Economic Masterplan as current projects are delivered and new projects are announced.

"And the university’s Fab Lab is an amazing place to be announcing these plans. As Chairman of our great University I’m delighted that this wonderful new facility is now open to help the innovators and entrepreneurs of Sunderland develop their amazing new ideas and products."