The future never looked so good for Salford, declared panellists at the annual Central Salford Investing in Regeneration event at the Lowry Hotel.
An audience of over 200 public and private sector regeneration and property professionals attended the event, sponsored by consultancy Urban Vision.
Chris Farrow, chief executive of urban regeneration company Central Salford, and development director Karen Hirst presented an update on projects in the area.
A panel chaired by Central Salford chairman Felicity Goodey discussed the theme of 'sustainable cities' and concluded that local knowledge was key to ensuring Salford fulfils its potential. The panel was made up of Barbara Spicer, chief executive of Salford City Council; Ken Bishop, director of DTZ; Martin Hall, vice chancellor of the University of Salford; Matt Crompton, joint managing director of Muse and director of English Cities Fund; and Peter Salmon, the director of BBC North.
Alan Burke, of Ask Developments, asked from the floor: "For the development community, continuity is key and while the plans we've heard for Salford are impressive, with some URCs around the country winding up, the threat of a potential change in government and cuts in public sector funding, is there concern that Central Salford might not be here for the long term to steer these plans through?"
Spicer responded: "The success of the URC is part of the toolkit for Salford and I envisage a long-term and fruitful relationship. In terms of a change in government, I don't see Central Salford being affected. Where the machinery exists at a local level to deliver well, they will leave it to get on with delivery."
Crompton added: "Central Salford has the comfort of being successful. The region needs people who understand regeneration and who aren't faceless."
Bishop concluded: "I don't think the future of Salford has looked as good as it does right now."
- The event included the launch of the third issue of Central Salford's Urban Regeneration magazine. For copies call 0161 601 7738.