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Towards the new city - Future Cities Forum round tables

Future Cities Forum is beginning a new series of research round tables on infrastructure, regeneration and investment.

It follows Future Cities Forum’s event at City Hall, London on 8th May, ‘The Making of the Modern City’ where the National Infrastructure Commission’s Chief Executive, Phil Graham, made our opening speech. Please read our blog and listen to the podcast:

We are continuing the debate with more in-depth discussion of the themes raised at our forum: the financing of important city regeneration and infrastructure, incorporating industrial work space and business parks, the expansion of roads and rail for connectivity, house building and community place-making, balancing tourism with carbon footprint, and the future of iM.

The National Infrastructure Commission, Transport for London, Network Rail, L&G Capital, Arup, Atkins, Manchester Airports Group, Allies and Morrison and KPMG all came together at City Hall, London, to look at these important discussion topics that drive government policy and shape our future cities.

TfL’s Head of Real Estate Development, Lester Hampson stated ‘Achieving serious levels of new housing development will require the public sector to step up’

Mayor of Middlesbrough, David Budd, remembers that it was his town in Victorian times that helped build the world with bridges and railways but now investment is needed to grapple with new industry - energy - where Middlesbrough once having captured carbon, can now start to use it proactively and its development corporation – the only one of its kind in the country – can develop this.

While Deputy Chief Executive of Medway Council, Richard Hicks said that investment has had to be made wisely and turning down the proposal of a new airport in the area, which might have put Medway on the map, also helped to preserve important wetlands of international significance:

‘These are big decisions’ he agreed ‘as the investment and connectivity would have been great but given the nationally significant wetlands the environmental impact would have been too great. We decided we could join up our existing airport capacity and train connectivity instead. Tourism is flourishing here and likewise we do have to be careful in managing the negative impacts of that and our air quality team is always coming up with different ideas to create sustainable travel patterns and rail is part of that’.

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