New plan “will boost towns”

Soccer ball
Soccer ball

Millions of pounds are set to be ploughed into North Lanarkshire towns over the next three years in a bid to kick start economic revival.

A new council economic strategy aims to support new and growing business, develop local infrastrucutre and attract investment.

The far-reaching scheme aims to make an impact on deprived areas where unemployment is high, while trying to boost town centres hit by business failures and the effects of recession.

The grand plan is said to be realistic and achievable, within the budget confines set.

And as part of its plan to regenerate town centres and communities North Lanarkshire Council will assist hundreds of new business start-ups per year.

Meanwhile the council will try to foster training designed to improve local employment prospects.

It will invest a claimed £40 million in new housing and £4 million in town centres while boosting training and encouraging closer links between schools and employers.

The ambitious council plans are detailed in Our Plan For Growth, a 24-page plan containing 55 individual pledges and targets aimed at improving the wellbeing of residents.

Regeneration and infrastructure convener Councillor David Fagan said: “We have taken a well-grounded, pragmatic approach to growing the economy of the area.

“Our Plan For Growth isn’t about ‘pie-in-the-sky’ projects and wishful thinking; we are building on our experience to deliver real opportunities, real support and, ultimately, real jobs.”

Councillor Fagan added: “Community Benefit clauses will be built into every one of our major tendered projects and we have specific assistance schemes to support new businesses through the vital second and third years.”