East-West Arc Delivering the Future
19 June 2018
On 19 June 2018 the University of Westminster with the support of the National Infrastructure Commission held the East – West Arc Symposium, examining the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge Arc as a gateway to deliver sustainable prosperity, at our Marylebone Campus.
The East-West Arc from Oxford to Milton Keynes and Cambridge is one of the most innovative and dynamic areas of the UK, central to the greater urbanised area from London to Birmingham. Its potential is recognised by the government as a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the region to become a ‘knowledge-intensive growth cluster, competing globally’. Yet that potential is capped by inadequate infrastructure and expensive housing.
As HS2 and the train and expressway linking Oxford, Milton Keynes and Cambridge become realities, this vital region can be seen better as a gateway in all directions, thus helping to rebalance growth across the UK. The two-day symposium on delivering a sustainable future for the East-West Arc will address these challenges from a wide range of perspectives. Click here to reserve your space.
Why was this symposium important?
The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) report PARTNERING FOR PROSPERITY: A new deal for the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford Arc sets out one vision and approach to infrastructure-led growth linked to place making. It sets out new thinking to meet the housing challenge that is equivalent to a new city the size of Birmingham. Government has long recognised the strategic importance of the Arc, not just to the Arc itself, comprised of three recently-formed regional growth boards, but also through its links with London, the Midlands and beyond.
To further strategic thinking, the NIC held a successful Ideas Competition last year, with scores of entries submitting bold visions. Building on these initiatives, the symposium will explore these ideas and others, as well as establish a forum for dialogue on how to design and deliver them so that we can envision the East-West Arc as gateway that strengthens in all directions.
Symposium and workshop 9:30am to 4:00pm
The symposium will featured interactive dialogue including the audience with leading figures in local and national government, professions, industry, the academy and other groups dealing with the East-West Arc. Bringing together in constructive dialogue this wide range of sectors best frames the debates on the future of this dynamic territory. Panel topics include the National Infrastructure Commission’s extensive work on the Arc, the Futures of the City Region, Governing and Delivering the City Region, and presentations from University of Westminster Design Studios on the East-West arc. It includes plenary addresses, panels, time for audience discussion, and a workshop on key elements necessary for the delivery framework.
Workshop 1 hour and 15 minutes
The goals of the workshop were to develop a framework for future steps in the East-West Arc and its surrounding areas, and to establish the University of Westminster as a forum for this debate and dialogue to occur.
The participants will include those from the range of sectors from the morning sessions, plus citizens, organisations, researchers, students and others.
The format will involve breakout small-group sessions. Each breakout session will focus on one topic, including Future Vision, Leadership and Governance, Infrastructure-Led Growth, and Finance and Investment.