Economic development under the spotlight for property experts

Worthing and Adur Councils’ pivotal role as enablers for economic success was the focus for the latest Sussex Property Alliance (SPA) event.

The photo shows (L-R): Robert Dowling (Carpenter Box), Martin Randall (Worthing and Adur Councils) and Gemma Lawrence (Bennett Griffin).

Martin Randall, Director for the Economy, described how collaboration between the councils was creating new opportunities for business growth and for both residential and commercial property development, generating productivity that outstrips cities such as Brighton, Cambridge and Bristol.

“Our vision is for responsible growth through partnership, working closely with central government and other agencies to be an enabler…to make things happen,”

(Martin Randall)

At the event, which was supported by Carpenter Box and Bennett Griffin, he highlighted a number of initiatives and developments currently underway to drive economic development, including:

  • A £2.5m investment by the councils to unlock superfast fibre broadband for local businesses
  • An apprenticeship fund open to local companies to support training
  • Numerous development projects to address specific business and employment needs, including IKEA at Lancing, new business space at both Shoreham Airport and Shoreham Port, plus major housing schemes across the area
  • A design and build project that redeveloped the former Adur civic centre into a stunning headquarters building for Focus Group in Shoreham
  • Redevelopment of some key sites in Worthing such as Teville Gate and Union Place, together with a new health hub close to the Town Hall
  • Investment in public realm and tourism projects to attract visitors and help address the changing face of retail centres

Robert Dowling, Head of Construction and Real Estate at chartered accountants and business advisors Carpenter Box, commented:

“ We know that local authorities face financial pressures, but with an innovation mindset and strong partnership ethos, Worthing and Adur are leveraging all the resources at their disposal to create an environment within which local businesses can thrive.”

The Sussex Property Alliance provides a forum where property professionals get together, exchange ideas, and build relationships.