Road and home developments help drive economy

A21 improvement project comes under fire for its spiralling costs

Upgrades to the A21 and significant residential developments are helping drive the west Kent economy, according to new figures.

The Kent Property Market Report 2015, produced by Caxtons chartered surveyors, Locate in Kent and Kent County Council, was launched last Thursday.

Caxtons chairman Ron Roser said: “In general, improving infrastructure and ongoing regeneration has positively and directly benefited Kent.

“This year’s report reflects the buoyancy across the industry and it is welcomed by all.”

Investment promotion agency Locate in Kent provided evidence of growth in demand, having helped 46 companies, 16 from overseas, to set up in the county in 2014/15, bringing 2,612 jobs.

At last Thursday’s launch, KCC leader Paul Carter also unveiled conclusions from the Kent and Medway Growth and Infrastructure Framework.

It highlights ‘significant growth anticipated in Kent and identifies £6.74bn of infrastructure developments required to support it’.

It also recognises a funding gap of £2.01bn.

But KCC is ‘taking action to address this and find innovative solutions’, working with Medway and the districts, government, companies and investors.

Cllr Carter said: “The GIF is an incredibly exciting opportunity. It tells a sobering story about the challenge we face in delivering growth, but also gives us a unique chance to do something about it.

“The solution will not come from the public sector alone. We will be working with industry, public sector and communities to create the best opportunity for quality communities into the future.”

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