Increased investment in transport infrastructure is one of the central planks of a devolution bid from Hampshire and the Isle of Wight issued to government on behalf of 15 local authorities.
Plans to boost transport connectivity were outlined in a ‘statement of intent’ sent to communities secretary Greg Clark this week, marking the start of formal negotiations over the deal.
It states a key ambition of the south coast ‘devolution project’ is to invest in ‘transport links to our global gateway ports and airports, as well as the Thames Valley and London, and improving digital connectivity for rural based businesses’
The project, which includes two Local Enterprise Partnerships, the private sector and health partners, also aims to accelerate housing delivery and increase investment in skills to boost productivity.
‘A devolution deal would further strengthen the existing relationships between local organisations and allow them to build on successful joint projects already delivered to boost economic growth, support businesses, improve local services and make Hampshire and Isle of Wight a better place to live and work,’ the group said.
More detailed plans are due to be submitted to government in autumn.
The 15 local authorities and two Local Enterprise Partnerships are:
* Hampshire County Council
* Isle of Wight Council
* Portsmouth City Council
* Southampton City Council
* Basingstoke & Deane Borough Council
* East Hants District Council
* Eastleigh Borough Council
* Fareham Borough Council
* Gosport Borough Council
* Hart District Council
* Havant Borough Council
* New Forest District Council
* Rushmoor Borough Council
* Test Valley Borough Council
* Winchester City Council
* M3 Local Enterprise Partnership
* Solent Local Enterprise Partnership