Councillor speaks at Wimbledon Bookfest
Speaking at the Wimbledon Bookfest, Councillor Peter Walker called on the business community to develop Wimbledon's Forgotten Economic Zone.
Councillor Walker was the guest speaker at the Business Networking Breakfast hosted by the Wimbledon Business Group held in the William Morris tent on Wednesday (October 8).
Councillor Walker (left) said: "Wimbledon must improve its offer to growing businesses wanting top quality office space. At present we have a number of large businesses employing many hundreds of people that benefits our local economy. Unfortunately our excellent transport infrastructure is a blessing and a curse. It attracts businesses wishing to set up in Wimbledon, but it also offers the opportunity for many of our locally based skilled workers the chance to commute to central London, rather than work here in Wimbledon."
"I know from personal experience that many of those commuting to central London would prefer to work locally if there was a growth of the high value jobs that currently are only available in central London.”
"The secret is to expand our central office offer. At present debate is centred on the development of comparatively small sites like the YMCA and a couple of car parks."
"However we have completely forgotten Wimbledon’s forgotten economic zone namely the Dundonald Industrial site. This site is in the middle of the town and has been in decline since it ceased to be a rail depot many years ago. It now houses low value storage and warehousing. However it is as long as the Broadway from the station to the Polka Theatre and on average wider than the Morrison's car park.”
"If Wimbledon is going to tempt some of the 9.5 million commuters that pass through the station each year to stay in the town for their work this vital economic zone needs to be developed."
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October 9, 2014