Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Business and Planning
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: Yes
Approval of Cabinet Member sought to enter into a grant agreement.
1. That Appendix D to the report be exempt from disclosure by virtue of the Local Government Act 1972, Schedule 12A Part 1, paragraph 3 (as amended), in that it contains information in relation to the business affairs of the council or any other body.
2. That the Cabinet Member authorised:
(2). The council to enter grant agreements with the project partners to pass on the obligations of the grant agreement between the City of London and Westminster City Council to the project partners.
(3). The delivery of the Central London Inclusive Growth Project as set out within the appended grant agreement.
(4). Capital expenditure against the budget within the capital programme of £1.605m of which £0.9m will be funded from the SIP grant and £0.705m will be funded by the Council.
1. The rationale for investing within the Central London Inclusive Growth Project is as follows:
· Inclusive growth alongside access to affordable workspace and business support are priority issues for London
· Low vacancy rates of central London, which are well below the Mayor’s availability threshold of 8%, confirms demand for space is outstripping supply resulting in instability, rising rents and narrowing of accommodation options. This situation is exasperated by a major net loss of employment space due in part to permitted development rights, which is in tension with the Mayor’s forecast for new jobs that London needs to accommodate.
· The bid proposal addresses the lack of affordable workspace and business support available in central London. The funding awarded will be invested in new affordable workspace with digital infrastructure and business support, mutually geared towards empowering entrepreneurs to overcome barriers to three critical stages in their early life, namely: setting up, employing their first employees and expanding.
· There is a strong economic case for the bid validated by a high-level cost benefit analysis by Adroit Economics.
· The bid will encourage collaboration between Central London boroughs. Camden, Hackney, Haringey, Kensington and Chelsea, Tower Hamlets and Westminster councils are well positioned and keen to work together to address the lack of affordable workspace and business support.
Publication date: 17/08/2020
Date of decision: 17/08/2020
Effective from: 25/08/2020