New Waterway will boost the local economy

A new report from planning and engineering consultants Peter Brett Associates says the proposed Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park can make a significant difference to the local economy, bringing many more visitors to the area each year and value to developments along its route.

Jane Hamilton, Chair of the Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Trust who commissioned the report, said

“This Economic Analysis report is a big step forward in making a strong and robust case for investment in the Waterway Park. It demonstrates that the project’s potential impact is wide-ranging, from accelerating development at Marston Valley to stimulating tourism, bringing in up to 800,000 new visitors each year and encouraging healthy lifestyles for those who live and work in the area.

We are pressing for the Waterway Park to be integrated into the future planning of the Oxford/Milton Keynes/Cambridge Corridor as we see it as essential infrastructure which will create a strong sense of place and identity as well as delivering on many of the targets set by the Government’s 25 Year Plan for the Environment.

I hope this Economic Analysis will start to explain why we have a strong belief in this transformational project and the benefits it can bring. We may have more work to do to fully demonstrate the potential of the Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park but I very much hope this will help encourage a wide range of partner organisations, agencies and individuals to support us and ensure our vision is realised for the benefit of all.”

The proposed Bedford Milton Keynes Waterway Park aims to link the River Great Ouse at Bedford to the Grand Union Canal at Milton Keynes running through the central section of the Oxford/Milton Keynes/Cambridge Corridor.

The Waterway will be 26km in length and is estimated to cost around £150m to build. The B&MKW Trust and its partners are seeking to integrate the Waterway into new development where possible.

Full details of the Economic Analysis can be seen here