Blackpool is the economic centre of the Fylde Coast, and to develop this role further we need quality office accommodation, a strong retail offer and efficient transport links. In transport, the extension of the tramway to Blackpool North will connect Bispham, Anchorsholme and beyond directly to the national rail network,and we will investigate the potential of other extensions to the tram network including a direct link to the Blackpool South rail line.
Meanwhile an effective approach to managing our roads, bridges and other transport assets will provide access to jobs, services and schools, get goods to the shops and help everyone make the most of their free time.
New green corridors will make pedestrian access to the town centre easier and improve the appearance of our built environment.
Key economic challenges
We have a number of challenges to improving the economy of Blackpool:
- High levels of child poverty and deprivation
- Low employment rate
- High levels of ill health and disability
- High numbers of benefits claimants
- Low levels of skills and qualifications
- Few skilled job opportunities and public sector job cuts
Key infrastructure projects
All across the FyldeCoast, developments are taking place in areas such as nuclear, wind and gas power, with further potential offered by other renewable energy sectors. In addition there are some key infrastructure projects:
- Deliver the tramway extension to Blackpool North
- Improved access to town through three “green corridors”,improving our environment
- New Business District - more professionals working in the town centre
- Deliver the new Energy College
- Sea defence works
Key employment projects
These fundamental shifts and developments need to be supported by measures which span the entire labour market, addressing our low wage and skills levels,which will in turn help us to retain more skilled young people in the town.
- Expand apprenticeship schemes
- Enterprise education at schools
- Specialist jobs schemes for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the town
- Promotion and delivery of the living wage
Key enterprise projects
Helping those with ideas and talent to develop flourishing young businesses through financial support and high quality advice, connecting them into Blackpool’s business community and building a common strength through shared infrastructure.
- Enterprise Zone at Blackpool Airport
- Business start-up support
- Increase across the Public Sector in the use of local contractors
- Business Champions– mentoring
Key housing projects
Any consideration of Blackpool’s economy cannot ignore the failing housing market in parts of the town. Without significant direct intervention to address this, the impact of work in this plan will be minimal.
- Reduce transience and stabilise communities by supporting quality public and private homes
- Establish a big new private sector landlord
- Deliver a home energy efficiency scheme
- Lobby for benefits changes to reduce number of HMOs
Key community safety projects
Local action is already underway to improve areas in three complementary ways. Better policing will ensure that we use legal powers to force landlords to make improvements,driving up the management standards of private property. Reaching out to local people through the transience project will give residents opportunities to volunteer, get training and make community contacts and friends.
- Strong management of the night time economy
- Adoption of Public Space Protection Orders
- Extension of Selective Licensing and transience projects across the town
- Behaviour management in the town centre