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Levelling up and UK cities: programme for Leeds Future Cities Forum

CGI render of how a transformed Temple Works on Leeds's South Bank would look if occupied by The British Library (Image courtesy developer CEG / The British Library). Jamie Andrews, Head of Culture & Learning at The British Library will be discussing these plans for expansion at Future Cities Forum in Leeds on 11th May.


Levelling Up and UK cities

Running order for 11th May, 9.30 am to 12.30pm at the offices of DLA Piper, Princes Exchange, Leeds LS1 4BY.

9.30 am to 10 am – Networking breakfast

10 am to 10.40 am – Panel One – Levelling up the North: economy, infrastructure and housing

Leader of Leeds City Council, Cllr James Lewis,

West Yorkshire Combined Authority's Director of Policy and Development, Liz Hunter,

DLA Piper Partner, Andrew Clarke,

BDP, Head of Transport, Peter Jenkins.

10.40 am to 11.20 am – Panel Two – Healthcare, social policy and innovation districts

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust's Head of Strategy, James Goodyear,

University of Leeds Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research & Innovation, Professor Nick Plant,

Bruntwood's Head of Strategy, Jessica Bowles

Arup’s Head of Science Sector, Tim Fry

Perkins + Will’s Principal, Mark Rowe

11.20 – 12 noon – Panel Three – Place, culture, and community

Channel Four's Managing Director – Nations & Regions, Sinead Rocks,

The British Library's Head of Culture and Learning, Jamie Andrews,

Historic England's Head of Region, Trevor Mitchell

Sheppard Robson – Equity Partner, Nick Ffoulkes

Page Park Architects, Head of Arts & Culture, Nicola Walls

12 noon to 12.30 pm.

Networking and goodbyes.

Future Cities Forum Levelling up forum in Leeds

Leeds is the UK's fastest growing city with a regional economy worth £64.6 billion. Over the next ten years the economy is expected to grow by 21%.

Investment is supporting new apprenticeship training and job creation at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust this year, targeting the most deprived areas of the city. The new Leeds hospitals' scheme is among 40 new hospital the UK government has committed to build by 2030 and the trust is one of the largest employers in the Leeds region, with 20,000 staff, playing a leading role in research, education and innovation. The British Library is looking at a potential expansion into Temple Works in Leeds and if so, the positive impact for the city's communities and visitor economy could be significant.

However, there are questions around the lasting effect of the pandemic and whether the UK government's scaling back of HS2 will affect levelling up in the region.

Will investment in new offices attract employees back to the city? Will infrastructure measures be put in place to ease city congestion and create greener transport? Can Leeds grow its brand on the global and national stage to become the UK's go-to cluster for professional services and science and tech innovation? Can Leeds create a day to night entertainment culture that supports the visitor economy and communities?

Future Cities Forum is being hosted by international law firm DLA Piper at its Leeds city offices in Princes Exchange. The firm has committed to take 80,000 square feet of prime office space at a new £85 million development on Wellington Street close to the Leeds city station and Channel Four's new home at the Majestic in City Square. The new office is described as state-of-the-art, fit for the post-coronavirus era, blending technology, open plan design and a roof garden. The council has stated that the move is a vote of confidence to redevelop one of the key gateways to the city.


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