Happy new year to everyone involved in Bristol Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone.
There is no doubt that we are operating in challenging times at the moment, but I am hugely optimistic about the city’s ambitious regeneration plans for Temple Quarter.
The Enterprise Zone is still very much in its infancy – just 9 months into a 25 year redevelopment programme – but you can expect to see some major steps being taken this year to drive it forwards. There will be significant progress on an arena for Bristol, plans drawn up for the redevelopment of Temple Meads Station, further announcements of local development orders by Bristol City Council to enable immediate use of more currently derelict sites in the Zone. You will also start to see a whole package of infrastructure work getting underway, including a bridge to create access to the former diesel depot site where the arena is being proposed, improved pedestrian access, and investigative work on options for remodelling the Temple Circus roundabout.
Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone is the city region’s flagship regeneration project, and delivering this will not just benefit people and businesses inside the Zone, it will help us to attract investment and jobs for the wider city and West of England region.
My principal job as Bristol’s elected Mayor is to ‘beat the drum’ for Bristol, which I intend to do very loudly in the coming months, including raising our profile as a potential Green Capital and seeking investment in Temple Quarter and other city region development areas. I shall be doing this as part of the LEP’s presence at MIPIM in March, Europe’s biggest property conference of which I am very familiar following my time as President of the RIBA. I also plan to follow up the Lord Mayor’s autumn visit to China with a visit in association with the University of Bristol and UKTI on a mission to seek both export and inward investment. I shall be taking such appropriate opportunities as they arise when I judge them to be in Bristol’s greater interest.
I’m determined that Bristol becomes the most business friendly, green city in Europe, building on its successful track record in innovation and creativity and a wealth of talent.