THe Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) is preparing the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF), which will guide the 10 councils of Greater Manchester in planning and managing the supply of land for jobs and new homes over the next 20 years.
AGMA recently asked for views on the Stage 1 document of the GMSF, which sets out the planning approach and the assumptions to be used in determining future needs for employment floorspace and housing land. Their approach is based on the 2013 Greater Manchester Strategy ‘Stronger Together’ which aims to secure ‘sustainable’ economic growth of the conurbation through competing in the global economy (both notions that we find deeply problematic).
SSM has submitted two main comments.
First, we suggest a revised vision for Greater Manchester emphasising quality of life in a viable economy, rather than economic growth, with the following main points:
By 2020, the Manchester city region will have pioneered a new model for a viable economy based on a more connected and greener city, where all our residents are able to fully realise their talents and benefit from sustained prosperity. This will ensure a good quality of life for all without harming the planet.
Manchester’s tradition of creativity, culture and knowledge will continue to flourish and will underpin our reputation as a pioneering, viable eco-city-region. We will collaborate globally in order to develop the talent, ideas and investment necessary to enable this huge transition.
At the local level, greater equity and collaboration within and between communities will ensure a fairer, healthier, safer and more inclusive place to live. Every resident and every neighbourhood will be valued and able to fully participate in and contribute to the city-region’s success.
We will produce and sell socially useful goods. We will be known for a low carbon economy, with excellent and efficient services and transport choices, alongside an outstanding natural environment.
Secondly, in the face of climate change, expected global food price rises and the need for sustainable, affordable food for the region’s population, we propose that the Spatial Framework should include land for food production. This would include land (and floorspace) for commercial and social enterprises which would provide jobs, as well as land within housing areas for communities and families to grow their own food.
AGMA will now create a database of interested organisations, groups, individuals and other stakeholders who will be invited to comment on the next stages of the GMSF – the further evidence base, development of options and draft GMSF – which will be prepared in 2015/16.
Submitted by Charlotte Allen