Andy Burnham says the creation of a new mayoral development corporation (MDC) will complete the regeneration of Stockport town centre.
The Metro Mayor announced the Stockport MDC during a special event to mark the unveiling of Greater Manchester’s rewritten spatial framework.
The MDC will look to unlock development sites and accelerate the speed of redevelopment within Stockport’s town centre.
Key to the initiative is Stockport Council’s vision for Town Centre West, an urban village which it’s hoped will become Greater Manchester’s “newest, greenest and coolest” affordable neighbourhood.
It’s envisaged Town Centre West will provide homes and workspace where residents and business will have “enviable access” to public transport and be amongst the best connected in the region.
Speaking at 11 Portland Street in Manchester city centre yesterday (7 January), Burnham said: “We have all been hearing about the decline in the traditional high street.
“This new Greater Manchester Spatial Framework anticipates this accelerating trend and foresees a new future for the proud towns that circle this great city; as residential rather than retail centres; good living centres with flexible workspace, quality public realm, public transport and cycle-ways.
“Reversing the decline of our towns is a big prize and we recognise that it will not come with the old piecemeal approach to town centre development.
“We need to help councils galvanise partners around a shared town masterplan and use new powers to make it happen.
“So, to this end, I can today confirm our intention to consult on the creation of the first Mayoral Development Corporation in Greater Manchester and the first in the UK to focus on a town centre.
“The Stockport MDC, which will be locally funded, will complete the regeneration of Stockport town centre with a new plan for the area around the famous railway arches.
“If successful, we will extend the MDC approach to other towns through our town centre challenge.”
Stockport was the first council to submit a nomination to be part of Mayor Burnham’s Town Centre Challenge, which was announced in 2017.