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Manchester City Council fires up for regeneration post Covid-19

Manchester City Council is setting out its' road to recovery from the coronavirus, as it welcomes its' new Strategic Director of Growth and Development, Louise Wyman.

A Manchester Economy Recovery Plan, the council says, which is dynamic and able to respond to evolving circumstances is being developed. It says as the sixth most deprived place in the country, based on 2019 national Index of Multiple Deprivation Statistics, Manchester is likely to have a high number of people in need of ongoing support.

It estimates a combined hit of increased costs and lost income will be more than £150 million this year alone with the government Covid-19 funding only covering a fraction of this. Manchester's detailed recovery plans will complement a wider Greater Manchester plan and share the same goal - to build back better.

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council wanted to reassure people that 'detailed planning has already begun.' He said:

'We are under no illusion of the scale of the task but also that, as with any crisis, there are also opportunities to capture new and better ways of doing things'.

Louise Wyman will provide strategic direction for development across the city, along with oversight of the Local Planning Authority, housing strategy, work and skills.

Louise joins Manchester City Council following previous roles as Director of Design and Inclusive Growth at the West Midlands Combined Authority and as Director of Strategy & Engagement at Homes England. She was central to Sir Edward Lister's teams that established the government's housing agency.

Throughout her career she has been involved in major projects both in the UK and America. She undertook her Masters studies at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design and spent time at Harvard as an instructor for their Career Discovery Programme. She led urban renewal projects in San Francisco following the 1989 earthquake and has been a member of the Planning Committee for London Legacy Development Corporation with responsibility for developing London's 2012 Olympic Park.

Louise is a high profile speaker, author and inclusion advocate. She will take up the Strategic Director of Development role on 22nd June 2020. She said:

'Manchester is a progressive global city of cultural leaders, businesses, citizens and educators whose influence reaches well beyond the city boundary. I am really delighted to bring my passion for inclusive growth and designing a decarbonised future to Manchester and playing my part in developing the city's future...The health and wellbeing of Manchester's communities will be at the heart of our development plans. There is so much talent in Manchester's Universities, research institutions, businesses and creative industries. I'm really looking forward to engaging these organisations. Manchester's diverse communities and the construction sector in shaping Manchester's growth.

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