Expert’s plea to new council leader

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A PLANNING expert has said Portsmouth City Council’s new leader should be pushing for a wealthier, healthier and more attractive city.

Robin Shepherd of Barton Willmore, a consultancy which has advised on schemes including Gunwharf Quays and Westquay Shopping Centre, is urging Gerald Vernon Jackson to ‘seize the opportunity’.

Robin said: ‘His immediate challenge is to steady the ship.

‘We would like to see him foster a collaborative environment that focuses on the enormous potential Portsmouth has as a city where people want to live, work and invest.

This is a real opportunity to stop, look and think about the city’s long-term future, focusing on key challenges such as transport, housing and public spaces,

‘Essential too, is collaboration.

‘Strides have been made towards a closer relationship with Southampton and the wider region, not as rivals but as allies.

‘The synergy of both working together, playing to each one’s strengths, creates a powerhouse for the south,’ he added.