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Oxbridge corridor could be worth £400bn post-Brexit, research suggests

Words: Laura Edgar
Population growth / Shutterstock

Research by planning consultancy Bidwells states that the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford Corridor could contribute £400 billion to the economy by 2050.

The delivery of the planned expressway and a re-opened Varsity Line, now known as East West Rail, is “essential” to maintaining the impressive growth seen in the corridor since 2013.

If it continued to expand at this rate, the corridor’s economy would grow to £398 billion. Its gross added value (GVA) would surpass £300 billion by 2050 even if the rate slowed below the long-term average rates seen since 1998, Bidwells explained.

The research considers the National Infrastructure Commission’s (NIC) defined growth corridor area and the latest ONS statistics from 2016. It found that the corridor delivered a GVA of £105 billion in 2016 and it is likely to surpass £113 billion by the end of 2018, having grown at 4 per cent per year since 1998.

The research also found that an estimated 15-20 million square feet of further office and lab space, across approximately 540 hectares of land, will be needed to accommodate this projected growth.

Sue Foxley, research director at Bidwells, said: “With one million new homes jobs proposed for the corridor, significant infrastructure investment is required now to ensure that the economy pushes to the top of our forecast.

“The government’s industrial strategy puts this region at the heart of the UK economy but infrastructure investment, in the right places, must follow to facilitate this impressive rate of growth and make the UK economically self-sufficient in a post-Brexit world.”

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