Thursday, October 2, 2014

News: Rotherham economy picking up?

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The conditions for economic growth are right and Rotherham is preparing for the next "growth cycle" and the council's regeneration chief is expecting this to be shown in the local commercial property market.

Writing in a blog, Paul Woodcock, director of planning, regeneration & culture at Rotherham Council discusses his perceptions of the local property market and economy.

He said: "It appears that most observers are talking about an upturn in the economy, with some evidence to back this up – ranging from Govt. unemployment figures to an upturn in the building trade (source: my friends from the local pub!).

"If history tells us anything then this will start to show in the commercial property market, with an increase in demand for property which then leads to a potential shortage of premises. The key for me, in previous "boom" times has been the availability of premises (in the main speculative build or empty space) which businesses can look around and hopefully compare and ultimately select their preferred office, factory or unit – just like buying or renting a house or car. This is a key route to economic growth & especially job growth.

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"During the last growth cycle (1998-08) only three out of the nine Sheffield City Region areas had net private sector job growth, the rest lost private sector jobs – with nearby Sheffield (-5,517 jobs) and Barnsley (-6,563 jobs). Rotherham topped the table with a net increase of 8,319 private sector jobs (source:SCR IER 2013).

"My take on this is the fact that Rotherham had (and still has) a good supply of commercial premises – at the right price, right location and a selection of sizes. We are keen to ensure this continues – as evidenced by RiDO's direct involvement in the R-Evolution buildings being built at the AMP and our recently approved planning core strategy.

"Let's hope the economy continues to pick up."

RiDO is the regeneration arm of Rotherham Council and works with partners from across South Yorkshire to provide a comprehensive property search and investment service, helping businesses find the right commercial property, from a small office, workshop or shop to a large industrial unit, call-centre or a plot of land.

RiDO website

Images: Harworth Estates

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