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Posted by: John Brace | 17th January 2012

Economy and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee 16/1/2011 Part 1 Peel presentation on Wirral Waters

Present:

Cllr Tony Cox
Cllr stuart Kelly
Cllr Gerry Ellis
Cllr Mark Johnston
Cllr Andrew Hodson
Cllr Denise Realey
Cllr Steve Niblock
Cllr Pat Hackett
Cllr Stuart Wittingham

Cllr Mark Johnston wished people a happy New Year. He asked for any declarations of interest. Cllr Steve Niblock declared a personal and prejudicial interest in item 5 (Outcome of Wirral’s Housing Market Renewal Transitional Funding Bid) as he lives in a Housing Market Renewal Initiative area.

Cllr Mark Johnston asked a question on the minutes, specifically about page 4 item 29. He asked if the information had been released?

Kevin Adderley said that the Department for Work and Pensions had not changed its approach and the information was embargoed as confidential. The minutes were agreed.

Cllr Mark Johnston said that as Lindsay Ashworth was in China, instead the presentation would be given by Richard Mawdsley instead. Richard Mawdsley introduced himself as the Project director for the Wirral Waters project which encompassed the Mersey Waters Enterprise Zone and the Peel International Trade Centre.

He gave those present some background to Peel, describing it as an asset rich, cash poor company with a brief description of its various divisions which included the Trafford Centre and a stake in Pinewood Studios. Mr. Mawdsley also referred to the wind turbines on the Mersey and Peel’s plans for power from a Mersey tidal barrage.

Media City UK in Salford Quays was given as an example of a completed regeneration project involving a docks area. He offered to show officers and councillors a tour to show them the site. The BBC had relocated to Media City in Salford Quays who he described as a “catalytic occupier”. He said that people had been sceptical that they could deliver the Trafford Centre but they had.

He explained Peel’s Ocean Gateway and Atlantic Gateway projects including a map showing the land owned by Peel. Peel’s projects were in three areas which were regeneration, transport & logistics and sustainable technologies. In 2005 they had bought the Mersey Docks and Harbour Company. The Liverpool Waters project had raised issues related to their World Heritage Status.

Mr. Mawdsley showed those present an aerial photo of the three miles of Wirral dock land. This covered the East Float, West Float, Bidston and Twelve Quays. The Bidston area was going to be a centre for leisure and retail. They would start the concept of the design in the Summer. The area had good motorway links and a underutilised railway line. He pointed out the polarised situation of house prices on the Wirral, with an East vs West divide.

Cllr Peter Kearney arrived.

Mr. Mawdlsey said they had gone “back to the drawing board” in 2006, with consultation with stakeholders and a supportive public. They had looked at best practice in different cities and had set out ten goals in 2008. These included an international city waterfront, new markets and prosperity, health and well-being as well as master planning. They wanted to create a new skyline for Wirral. He compared the height of the planned Peel buildings with other well-known tall buildings from around the world, stating it was going to be a similar height to the London Eye.


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