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Blears heads Manchester post-casino planning team

Communities Secretary Hazel Blears yesterday chaired the first meeting of a group of high profile government ministers and council leaders charged with devising a regeneration plan for East Manchester after the scrapping of its proposed mega-casino.

The Regeneration of East Manchester Ministerial Group, which includes Transport Secretary Ruth Kelly and Business Secretary John Hutton, aims to help Manchester City Council and its partners identify and develop a range
of regeneration alternatives to regional casino led regeneration.

Blears said: "This group will help Manchester City Council and its partners to drive forward new jobs, more skills and better transport for our
communities. The Government is fully committed to continue the successful regeneration of Manchester well into the future."

Specific projects that the group will consider and drive forward are:

  • The development of Sportcity by unlocking development land and the potential for new jobs through new capital projects;

  • The potential to transform rail capacity in Manchester and across the North by investigating the opportunity for capacity

  • The Higher Education Funding Council for England study into the demand for higher and further education in Manchester;

  • Greater Manchester plans for a Multi-Area Agreement to be signed this summer to boost jobs, transport, investment and housing through greater co-operation;

The Group will report progress on the strategic package to the Cabinet.

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