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Read about all the latest developments from the world of Volterra below. If you want to stay in touch with us sign up for our monthly newsletter using the form on the right.

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Planning permission granted to new hotel development in Finsbury Square following Volterra Report

Permission was granted earlier this month for The Montcalm Hotel Group to convert the Royal London House in Finsbury Square to a 256 room hotel. Islington Council initially refused planning consent as they did not want to lose office space and stated that a hotel would compromise the economic function of the area. Volterra were brought on board to challenge this judgment and assess the potential benefits the hotel could bring to the local economy. Read more here.
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Bridget puts QE ‘In the balance’

Volterra’s Bridget Rosewell was featured on BBC World Service’s In the Balance programme earlier this month in a programme where economics correspondent Andrew Walker led a discussion on whether or not Quantitative Easing has worked in the USA. Bridget talked of how she feels QE was essential in the first instance and greatly helped in stabilising the US economy, but warns of how it is an ‘addictive drug’ and the process of ‘getting off it’ will be difficult. Listen to the programme here, or download a podcast here.
HS2 Stoke Route – Better, cheaper, faster and greener

HS2 Stoke Route – Better, cheaper, faster and greener

Volterra has central role in developing the stunning business case for HS2 the Stoke Route – which was launched in Westminster on the 15th October. The Stoke Route has been developed by a partnership of top consultants commissioned by Council to make the case for an HS2 station between Birmingham and Manchester at in the city, the only major conurbation between Birmingham and Manchester.
Impact of the Night Tube on London’s Night Time Economy

Impact of the Night Tube on London’s Night Time Economy

The team at Volterra produced the figures which underpinned Transport for London and London First’s report on the impact of the Night Tube on the night time economy in London. The findings indicated that the Night Tube will support 1,965 permanent jobs in the night time economy, and that there could be time savings of up to an hour on some routes.
Paul Buchanan speaks at the RTPI 2014 Planning Convention

Paul Buchanan speaks at the RTPI 2014 Planning Convention

Paul's central argument is that economic growth is coming primarily from cities. We have been witnessing this trend for the last 50 years and it looks as if it will continue. The dominance of cities is increasing in population terms and even more so economically. The planning industry needs to be thinking about how they can accommodate such dramatic growth in our cities.
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Bridget talks about North-East Growth on BBC Radio 4

Volterra's senior partner Bridget Rosewell was recently interviewed for Martin Wainwrights series on BBC Radio 4 'The Myth of the North'. The programme considered how the stereotype that life is 'grim' in the north of England is vastly outdated, focusing on the region's industry and culture in the 21st century. Bridget was interviewed in the final episode which focused on the manufacturing industry in the North East, drawing on Bridget's experience from her work with the North East Local Enterprise Partnership.
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HS1-HS2 Camden Link

Volterra has recently completed a report assessing the options for the HS1-HS2 link for Camden Town Unlimited. We argued that the proposal to run a single surface level track through Camden was ‘an unconvincing compromise’: HS2 Ltd should either build a full twin track tunnel under Camden or build nothing at all. The proposal was a half measure which imposed significant costs with limited benefits. Our work reviewed costs, impacts during construction on local businesses, residents and road and rail users. Less than a week after our report was published, Sir David Higgins, the new chairman of HS2 Ltd, delivered his ‘HS2 Plus’ report with his visions for HS2. In this report, he describes the proposed HS1-HS2 Link as ‘an imperfect compromise’: perhaps a reference to our report! Read the HS2 Plus report here, and our report here
A City-Centre HS2 Station for Sheffield?

A City-Centre HS2 Station for Sheffield?

Volterra has been supporting Sheffield City Council in making the case for a city centre HS2 station. We have examined the benefits of locating the city’s HS2 station at Victoria within the city centre, instead of the site at Meadowhall currently promoted by HS2 Ltd. Our findings suggest that the economic, employment and regeneration benefits of a city centre station would far exceed those from a parkway station. Similar international case studies have also demonstrated that city centre stations perform better than out of town stations, with parkway stations often failing to generate significant economic activity. Analysis of the Sheffield economy has shown that a city centre station would support 6,500 more jobs, worth up to £5 billion in additional GVA growth for the city region. Sheffield City Council have used our findings to help formulate their response to the Government consultation on HS2’s preferred route and stations. Read more about the case here, read our report in full here, and read Sheffield City Council’s response here.
Bridget looks at how technology shapes the capital

Bridget looks at how technology shapes the capital

Volterra’s senior partner Bridget Rosewell has recently written an article for TechCity Insider – a publication centring on the people, issues and companies defining the next generation of digital business in and around east London. Bridget’s article concentrates on how technological advances have historically forced change on London and how she believes London needs capacity for opportunities that we are yet to conceive! Read the article in full here. In other news we are thrilled to announce that Bridget was made an honorary fellow of the Institute of Civil Engineers last month.

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