Preston regeneration team needed to deliver major plans

Michael Hunt

Recruitment has started for a new team to help cement Preston as the third city of the North West.

Preston Vision, set up to help Preston City Council with the regeneration of the city, is now looking for a chief executive, chairman and non-executive directors.

Malcolm McVicar, who is stepping down from his position as chairman of the Preston Vision board, said: "I hope to continue to be involved and am happy to remain until we find the right chair to lead Preston Vision during the next few exciting and challenging years.

"The involvement of the private sector is vital so that we ensure there is a strong private sector focus on the Preston Vision board and in all the downstream activities. This series of appointments is vital in achieving and securing this ambition."

Preston Vision was originally created as an informal public and private sector partnership and its purpose was to capitalise on the benefits the Tithebarn regeneration scheme would bring, ensuring it extended to the rest of the city and to the wider area.

The three founding members of Preston Vision are Preston City Council, Lancashire County Council and the University of Central Lancashire, while South Ribble Council and the North West Development Agency joined the board since it became a limited company.

Ian Haythornthwaite, NWDA executive director of resources, said: "Building on the opportunities provided by the Tithebarn and Preston Guild, we hope that this development will spearhead a step change that will enable the city to realise its ambitions, capitalising on its potential as an important driver of regional economic growth."

Preston Vision will be hoping to develop the following key projects:

  • Preston Tithebarn – the £700m redevelopment of the city centre. A major mixed-use scheme made up of around 1.5m sq ft of retail, leisure and residential development
  • A 21st century central business district
  • Proposals to regenerate under utilised waterways and make better use of the river, canal and former docklands
  • Green city spaces – enhancement of city centre parks and spaces
  • Improved accessibility of the city centre

Robinson Keane has been appointed by the Preston Vision board to help with its search of a new team, while the positions will continue to be advertised tomorrow.

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