THE successful designation of the York Central Enterprise Zone was marked on Friday (08 July) when local authority leaders signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the site. Councillors and partners were joined by Northern Powerhouse Minister James Wharton, a supporter of the scheme.
As one of the key partners for the scheme, we worked alongside City of York council to deliver their joint bid for Enterprise Zone status for York Central. It is one of the largest brownfield sites in the North of England, standing at 72 hectares, with potential for development.
The status will mean that 50 per cent of business rates for the York Central site, which would have gone back to government, will be retained in the area, providing funding to invest in infrastructure. Prospective businesses locating on York Central will also get business rate relief for the first five-years, encouraging inward investment and business growth.
Overall, estimates suggest that as these favourable conditions provide incentives for businesses to invest in York Central, they could add over £1.1 billion value to the area’s economy. By creating up to 7,000 high-value office based jobs, the growth generated would increase the average wages in York and grow the economy by an estimated 20 per cent.
Existing assets in York Central, such as the National Railway Museum, will benefit from the Enterprise Zone status and be supported in their plans to expand their site. The status will also support the infrastructure for housing development, helping to fulfil the ever-growing need for new homes in the city of York, whilst protecting greenbelt land.
Entrepreneur Barry Dodd CBE, Chair of the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership said:
“I know from my time at Yorkshire Forward that this has taken around 12 years to happen so we are now delighted to see it taking place. With the potential to grow York’s economy by 20 per cent, creating jobs and boosting average wages, it couldn’t come at a better time. “At the local enterprise partnership we work with our partners to help grow the economy by creating quality jobs, building more homes and attracting investment, so we fully support the potential of the site and welcome the Government backing our ambitious plans.”
Northern powerhouse Minister James Wharton, said:
“This Government is committed to rebalancing the economy and creating a Northern Powerhouse - Enterprise Zones play a key role in this by creating thousands of jobs and attracting billions of pounds of investment."