AN AMBITIOUS PLAN to create more than 40,000 jobs over the next 20 years has been set out by business and political leaders.
The plan includes initiatives to tackle a range of long-term problems that have damaged economic growth in the region including skill levels, transport and attracting more investment from overseas.
Ambitions include turning the Leeds City Region area, which covers West Yorkshire and many of its neighbours, into a “global digital centre”, dramatically increasing the building of new homes and moving towards a properly integrated ‘metro style’ transport network.
The Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership and West Yorkshire Combined Authority, have drawn up the plan to show how they will spend hundreds of millions of pounds already secured from the Government, the European Union and other sources to grow the local economy.
Local enterprise partnership chairman Roger Marsh said a key element of the plan was to ensure the area sees “good growth” that improves quality of life as well as incomes.
He said: “This is built on investing the funding we have available to us.”
Following the flooding which devastated parts of the region on Boxing Day, the document proposes a programme of measures across the area to reduce the risk of a repetition.
It also identifies areas which will be prioritised for jobs and housing growth.
The main target is to grow the economy faster than the national average so the area is contributing more to than it is taking in Government funding. The document has been published as discussions continue with ministers over a potential devolution deal for the area which may include an elected mayor.