City leaders’ message to investors: ‘Portsmouth is the place to be.’

An artist's impression of the Northern Quarter

An artist's impression of the Northern Quarter

The hustings at Portsmouth College - from left:  David Carpenter (college governor), Gerald Vernon-Jackson (Lib Dems), Ian McCulloch (Green), Steve Fitzgerald (college teacher and chair), Stephen Morgan (Labour), Kevan Chippindall-Higgin (Ukip) and Penny Mordaunt (Cons)   Picture: Heather Eggelton

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WE’RE a city which is open for business.

That’s the message Portsmouth City Council wants to get across to developers in the hope they will come and invest.

It aims to do that at an ‘InvestPortsmouth’ networking session it’s holding at the UK headquarters of CBRE, a leading commercial property and real estate services firm, in London on Tuesday, November 26.

Guests will have breakfast and listen to Portsmouth’s council leader, Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, and the council’s chief executive David Williams, talk about Portsmouth being a great place to be.

Centros director John Marsh will say why the company has decided to turn Portsmouth’s Northern Quarter into a multi-million pound retail, leisure and residential development.

Artist’s impressions of the area were released last week, as reported in The News.

Former University of Portsmouth chancellor Sheila Hancock will also discuss why the city is an up-and-coming place.

It’s hoped the occasion will help to specifically attract investment in the hotel market.

Cllr Vernon-Jackson said: ‘We want to talk to potential developers.

‘There is a real need for hotel space in the city and we need to make sure that people who want to build hotels in the city know how they can do that.

‘We want to get things built so we can get jobs created.

‘The number of visitors to Portsmouth is going up.

‘There are three hotels we have given planning permission to, but no-one has built them yet.’

Visitors will also learn about the success of the Tipner park and ride project, due for completion next year, The Mary Rose Museum, plans to regenerate The Hard and other areas in the next 20 years.

Business leaders who display a keen interest during the event will be invited to come down to Portsmouth see where there are sites with potential.

Kathy Wadsworth, the council’s strategic director for regeneration, said: ‘This is about putting investment into the city, and the city council taking the initiative.

‘We want to take Portsmouth to the market, and we will be doing that in a prestigious place.’

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