Work to start on Central Business District

line drawing of Stoke-on-Trent proposed Central business DistrictWork is set to start on Stoke-on-Trent’s Central Business District in May when demolition work starts on the Andromeda building. The building was formerly home to Regimes nightclub and Rileys snooker club.

The Andromeda building along with 9 Broad Street, the former Job Centre building on Cannon Street and Crown Street Garage on Orb Street, was acquired by the former Advantage West Midlands and transferred to the Homes and Communities Agency as part of the Central Business District project. Continue reading

Head Of Regeneration At Stoke-on-Trent City Council Tom Macartney Resigns

Head of Regeneration at Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Managing Director of the NSRP Tom Macartney is to leave his £150,000 a year post.

Rumours had been circulating for weeks that Mr Macartney was asked to leave and had been placed on ‘Garden Leave’, but this has proved to be unfounded and as we understand the situation, Mr Macartney has resigned from his post and will serve out his notice period which will finish at the end of September.

Regeneration in the city has been besmirched with problems over recent times, but Mr Macartney has always defended his department and insisted that projects are on track and will be delivered on time.

He recently asked for more time to deliver key regeneration projects and he said that he £15 million city centre bus station, the £40 million public realm scheme to improve the city centre, the £230 million Central Business District to the south of the city centre, and the £360 million East West Centre shopping precinct would all see construction commence in the next two years.

The NSRP has also run into problems recently with Newcastle Borough Council pulling out of the partnership. Staffordshire Moorlands District Council and Staffordshire County Council were also thought to be considering their positions.

The regeneration of Stoke-on-Trent has been hampered by the recession but Tom Macartney’s department has attracted criticism over missing out on certain opportunities and chances of making progress before the country was decimated by economic strife.

Regeneration opportunities will be further effected by the proposed cuts in government funding which will effect bodies like Advantage West Midlands, a vital funding source to local regeneration.

Strategic Partnership Ended Before It’s Begun.

Pits n Pots can today confirm that Stoke-on-Trent City Council plans to switch up to 800 jobs to the proposed Central Business District in Hanley have been scrapped.

The City Council had proposed to switch the jobs to a private company. The preferred bidders were Balfour Beatty Workplace/BT Global Solutions and Serco who are still fighting for the contract.

The jobs would have included members of the Human Resources, CCTV maintenance, IT and Administration departments. They were informed that the proposed move had been scrapped in a memo yesterday.

Sources informed Pits n Pots yesterday that councillors had been told of the decision in a private briefing by Chief Executive John van de Laarschott yesterday morning. He informed the elected members present that the project would not realise the return necessary to make it viable and that he was recommending the Cabinet to drop the plans.

A number of councillors are said to be outraged at the waste of some £1.5 million of public money.

We will bring you audio reaction to this story later.

NSRP Update ““ Central Business District Project Manager paid £850 A DAY!

NSRP Update ““ Central Business District Project Manager paid £850 A DAY!

North Staffs Regeneration Partnership are paying a consultant more than the Prime Minister to project manage the Central Business District Project. it has been revealed in another FOI request to Advantage West Midlands that this project manager is being paid £850 a day from the public purse.

Meanwhile the FOI also shows that £800,000 is still being withheld from the NSRP because of previous financial irregularities in several other consultant procurements.

This is to be discussed at the Economic Development Overview and Scrutiny Committee on the 17 February 2010 at Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

Is it just me or are these salaries obscene??