We continue our series in which Business Link Magazine invites business leaders from across the region to offer up their predictions for the year ahead.
Whilst forecasting is an unpredictable science at best and, to the best of our knowledge, none of us actually own a crystal ball – it is uncanny how close these predictions have been in previous years.
Here, we catch up with John Forkin, Managing Director of Marketing Derby, to learn what he has to say about 2018.
What 2018 means for Derby
“You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been” is a great quote to consider when looking ahead to what’s in store for Derby in 2018.
The past 12 months have seen significant developments in the city, particularly in residential development. City living has long been an area in which Derby has needed improvement and, for the first time, 2017 saw more new residences built in the city than the rest of Derby combined. This includes office-resi conversions, newly-built apartments and significant student accommodation.
This influx of over 1000 people into the city centre has created more vibrancy with greater footfall, driving confidence in the retail and leisure sectors with low vacancy rates, new premium brands and outstanding independent operators coming to Derby in 2017.
Commercially, the city is confidently striding ahead, with thriving businesses weathering the Brexit storm, and Rolls-Royce, Bombardier and Toyota see huge order books driving investment in their HQ facilities.
2018 will continue to see city living at the forefront of city centre regeneration. Major schemes at Becket Well, Cathedral Road and the Nightingale Quarter will continue to move forward, whilst planning applications on Agard Street and North Riverside have the potential to create new city gateways that stand as testament to the confidence which the commercial property sector is starting to have in the city.
New retailers such as TK Maxx, Bunk and Starbucks will lead the way in new openings, whilst the public realm works in the St Peter’s Quarter will give the area a much-needed lift.
The office market is set for a shot in the arm with potential new Grade-A schemes in the Cathedral Quarter set to be unveiled whilst Infinity Park Derby and Derby Triangle should see significant announcements too.
Finally, progress on a new performance venue at the heart of the city and the Victorian Market Hall will continue to ensure the future vibrancy of Derby’s city centre cultural offer.
As confidence continues to grow, 2018 will be a year of further progress and delivery for Derby.