Manchester has been chosen to receive a share of a €24million fund, as part of a European project to reduce carbon emissions and transform the area into a ‘smart city’.
Cash will come from a European Commission scheme to demonstarte ‘smart green growth’ – reducing carbon emissions while boosting the economy – with Eindhoven in Holland and Stavanger in Norway also taking a portion of the grant.
Proposed funding will further enable investment in technologies from renewable energy and support the increased use of electric cars.
The Manchester part of the project will focus on The Corridor, which runs south from St Peter’s Square to Whitworth Park across Oxford Road and is home to pharmaceutical companies as well as educational, creative industries and financial service organisations and businesses.
The project will be led by Manchester City Council, alongside The University of Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan University, Bruntwood and Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
Leader of Manchester City Council, Sir Richard Leese, said: “Cities use a large proportion of the world’s resources and need to be in the forefront of environmental improvements.
“New technologies are opening up opportunities all the time and Corridor Manchester has the right conditions to show how smart city districts can help make a positive difference.”
The Corridor currently generates £3.2billion of Manchester’s gross value added (GVA), and employs 12% of the city’s workforce, totalling up to 55,000 people.
Professor John Brooks, Vice Chancellor of Manchester Metropolitan University and chair of the Corridor Board, said: “This funding will help us realise the potential of The Corridor.
“It is large enough to demonstrate new approaches to smart cities at scale and suitably well-connected to attract international attention.
“The strong track record of partnership working in this city will enable to deliver multiple projects in an integrated way.”
Other Manchester based businesses involved are Siemens and digital technology company Clicks and Links.
Juergen Maier, CEO for Siemens UK, said: “Siemens is absolutely delighted that with this funding Manchester can push ahead with this project.
“The Corridor has all the right assets for establishing an international smart city district, demonstrating how new technologies can drive growth whilst at the same time reducing carbon emissions.”
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