Medway: "closer to central London than Surrey commuter belt"
Thu 10 December 2015, 10:58 am
The ninth edition of Medway1, the inward investment magazine published by 3Fox International in partnership with Medway Council, was launched on 8 December, at an event hosted by BNP Paribas Real Estate in its City headquarters.
Welcoming more than 80 guests from across the property industry, Samuel Blake of BNP Paribas Real Estate, said: “The Medway towns – as little as half an hour away by train from London – are far closer [to central London] than most commuter towns around Surrey and the wider commuter belt. And with a growing local economy and excellent value housing, Medway offers a very attractive location that is set to outperform over the coming years. The quality of the guest list tonight is a testament to that.”
Councillor Alan Jarrett, leader of Medway Council, said: “I want to thank 3Fox International for producing the ninth iteration of Medway1; it’s an excellent magazine giving a good insight into what’s going on in Medway and the opportunities available. Medway is a vibrant place, there are enormous opportunities for residential development – for business opportunities, for jobs and growth. We want to grow our business community and our residential offer.
“An awful lot is going to go on in a very short space of time,” added Jarrett. “The Enterprise Zone at Rochester Airport will provide 1,000 jobs and a host of other initiatives. The new railway station at Rochester is being delivered by Network Rail, a £26 million investment and another example of how Medway is changing.”
Director of regeneration, community and culture at Medway Council, Richard Hicks, outlined Medway’s strategic location: “It’s at a midpoint between the capital and the continent and home to 270,000 people, the largest urban area in the south-east outside London. We’re a city in all but name, and we have a rich heritage and a great future.”
Hicks described the area’s “amazing connectivity”: “We have fast train links through each of our five main rail stations, with a raft of investment – Strood £1.1 million, Gillingham £2.5 million, Chatham is going to have £2.5 million, and in Rochester, at 5.36pm on the 13th of December, the first train is going to be coming through there, less than 40 minutes from St Pancras.”
James Whittaker, group development director of the Peel Group, highlighted achievements such as the recently opened Asda supermarket and Medway UTC, the university technical college for 14-19 year old students. “Chatham Waters comprises 26 acres and will be a new mixed-use development to create about 3,000 jobs. The development will open up more of the River Medway and links up very well with Victory Pier at Gillingham, which is being delivered by Berkeley.”
Whittaker set out the vision for Chatham Waters: “The framework concept visual shows a waterfront boulevard similar to that built at Oslo Waterfront, that will accommodate cafes, restaurant shops and bars. An event city is also planned to mirror our operation at intu Trafford Centre in Manchester. This will accommodate events such as the potential for a boat show, conferences and concerts, even the X Factor auditions. The site will be managed by Peel Land and Property.”
He concluded: “The significant improvements including the fast train to London – only 40 minutes away – has a very positive impact on the area, we are witnessing some strong growth and demand within the property sector and believe this will continue to grow.”
Read the latest issue of Medway1 below:
View pictures from the event: