Birmingham City Centre Enterprise Zone is to receive a £15 million cash injection to provide grants and loans to developers looking to start new projects and boost the economy.
The Birmingham City Centre Enterprise Zone consists of 26 sites around the city which have the potential over the next 25 years to deliver 1.3 million square metres of development and create thousands of jobs in the trades.
In July 2012, Birmingham City Council approved a £128 million investment plan to kickstart the Zone with specific allocations for the redevelopment of Paradise Circus and the extension of the Midland Metro. Included in the plan was £15 million for a site development and access fund.
The fund has now secured the backing of Birmingham City Council’s cabinet and it is hoped this will build on the progress with the Zone, which is forecast to create 2,500 by 2015 with a number of key developments already under way.
Cllr Tahir Ali, cabinet member for development, jobs and skills, said: “Birmingham quite rightly has a reputation as a city of enterprise and innovation, offering opportunities for business and employment.
“We’re committed to promoting economic growth but to do this we need to do all we can to help businesses overcome some of the barriers to finance which will in turn encourage private sector investment and generate additional business rates.”
Expressions of interest for grants managed by the city council and loans by Finance Birmingham will now be invited.
The access fund will contribute to the overall Zone by helping to increase commercial space, attracting inward investment and creating new job opportunities.