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law Future of Reading’s Infrastructure


The third roundtable discussion in BDB Pitmans’ pioneering campaign to shape Reading’s future saw the complex subject of infrastructure in the town tackled


Attendees from Ardynt Consulting, UK Property Forums, Peter Brett Associates (PBA), the Thames Valley LEP and many more heard speakers Tom Barlow, senior policy adviser (Infrastructure) of the CBI, Scott Witchalls of PBA and Graham Cross from Heathrow Southern Railway (HSR).


Chaired by BDB Pitmans’ construction partner David Gwillim, the discussions were extensive. Scott Witchalls talked of how flexible working can have a huge impact on the transport network.


He said: “We as a business are rolling out genuine flexible working which takes huge pressure off our office space, but it’s also better for the transport infrastructure. People are much happier for this too.”


He asked delegates to be upfront about congestion. “Providing capacity for growth will not necessarily solve the issue of congestion – we should be honest about that” he said. He also said: “Tackling air quality will be a priority for local government, and should be a priority for businesses too.”


Tom Barlow of the CBI said only 27% of businesses said they were satisfied with the


infrastructure in the Thames Valley and talked of digital connections. He said: “It’s important that we also support the soft infrastructure projects in the area – we need the area’s digital connectivity to meet the demands of businesses and residential homes.”


Graham Cross spoke about the HSR project which is being privately financed and which should be completed by 2026 to coincide with the third runway at Heathrow.


He said: “It is a transport planning failure that places like Reading, Basingstoke, Guildford and south west London aren’t connected to Heathrow – this is what we’re planning to change with Heathrow Southern Railway.”


He added: “The perception is that the Thames Valley is rich and can pay for its own


Glasses Raised to Verisona Law


Clients, staff and associates of leading Portsmouth law firm Verisona Law, gathered in the business lounge of Lakeside North Harbour for a champagne reception to celebrate the firm’s 10-year anniversary.


“As the second tenant to move into Lakeside back in 2008, we thought it fitting to show how both our business and the Lakeside development have grown together in the past 10 years,” explained Verisona Law’s chairman, Michael Dyer.


Over 100 private client and corporate guests enjoyed a delightful atmosphere in which to toast the law firm’s achievements and award-winning success to date.


Marketing manager Kirsty Hughes said: “We were thrilled with the number of people who wanted to mark the firm’s milestone anniversary with us and are looking forward to more events in 2019.”


verisonalaw.com


infrastructure. It’s therefore important to have a narrative for what the business case is for investment in the region.”


Tony Pettitt of Reading Buses spoke of the company’s commitment to improving the infrastructure. He said: “Development is not just about long-distance transport links, but also the first and last mile of people’s journeys. Sustainable local channels are equally important.”


The fourth and final roundtable on Investing in Commercial Property will be at 4pm on February 13, 2019, at The Roseate Forbury Hotel in Forbury Square, Reading.


If you would like to attend this or would like any further information, email Miki Ponjevic:


mikiponjevic@bdbpitmans.com


THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE – JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2019


businessmag.co.uk


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