The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) is opening a new office in Leeds, and expects 40 per cent of staff to be Leeds-based.
The NIC, which provides impartial, expert advice to government on major long-term economic infrastructure challenges, will have a new site in the city by the end of 2023. It will also keep a presence in London.
There are currently around 50 staff working for the NIC, and the new office will ensure that those advising on future infrastructure are more representative of the public they serve.
The move will help bolster the NIC’s role in addressing regional differences in infrastructure needs. It is part of the government’s commitment to move 22,000 civil service positions out of London and the South East by 2030, through the Places for Growth programme.
The NIC joins the UK Infrastructure Bank which opened its headquarters in Leeds in June. The Bank is tasked with accelerating investment into ambitious infrastructure projects, cutting emissions and levelling up every part of the UK.
"It’s great to be establishing a second base in Leeds. It is not only a great city to live and work in, but the move underlines the Commission’s role in advising government on the role infrastructure can play in boosting local economies and improving quality of life right across the UK," said Sir John Armitt, Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission. "We look forward to continuing to work with local leaders as the Commission starts work on our next major assessment of the country’s infrastructure needs for the future, to be published in 2023."
Last year the Government kickstarted an infrastructure revolution by publishing the National Infrastructure Strategy which laid out plans to upgrade road, rail and digital infrastructure.
Since then, the Government has committed over £130 billion to economic infrastructure, including £5.7 billion over five years to eight city regions in order to boost urban transport connectivity.
A further 15 Town Deals were confirmed in July, allocating £335 million to revitalise towns across England, as part of the government’s plan to level up English regions.
James is the Editor of Government Transformation magazine, and has been covering digital government and public sector reform for 20 years. He also oversees the development of the agenda for the UK's biggest public sector transformation conference.