Ever since the Industrial Revolution when Manchester’s textile industry saw the incredible expansion of the city, the UK’s northern capital has always been a centre of industrial and business excellence. It is hardly surprising that it has been chosen as the centre for ‘Urban Connect’ and forms the basis of plans for the new ‘Northern Powerhouse’ focusing on business and economic growth. Some regard and describe Manchester as the ‘London of the North’ and with a forecast population growth set to reach 15.1% between 2016 and 2036, the city will need to live up to its name by providing enough living, working and social spaces to accommodate this rise. Of course, this rapid population and business growth also creates vast possibilities for both the Engineering and Construction industries.
Manchester’s thriving Construction industry is responsible for an estimated 50,000 jobs which is currently valued at around £3 billion, counting as 6.8% towards Manchester’s economic output. With these uplifting and positive economic predictions for Manchester’s future, things can only get better. This growth is also reflected in the job market where we have seen a recorded 5% growth in both the Technical Engineering and Construction sectors from 2015-16 onwards.
With the projected growth population predictions forecast over the next 20 years, it should not be difficult to attract newcomers into the Construction sector, after all Manchester currently has four Universities. There are presently around 14,000 students studying, Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths courses which can all be put to good use in the future.
Alongside the visual changes that can already be seen in and around Manchester, we can see that big businesses are also realising the need for large scale new build projects to accommodate the forthcoming expansion. Recent large scale projects have included the £1 billion Airport expansion and a hugely ambitious and visionary engineering partnership between a large Chinese Construction company and Manchester. The Chinese president, XI Jinping said that it is the ‘first major infrastructure project of its time’ between the UK and China. Wider infrastructural improvements have also been taking place, including the £1 billion Northern Hub improvements at Manchester Victoria station and the £12.7m investment into the Manchester Museum. All of these significant investments demonstrate how seriously Manchester is being taken on both the domestic and world stage. Without putting too fine a point on it, this is a great time to live and work in the city and an even better time to work in Construction and Engineering.