UKREiiF to remain in Leeds
Following an exploration of potential host cities, the UK Real Estate Investment and Infrastructure Forum will continue to be held in Yorkshire for the foreseeable future.
Launched in 2022 by Built Environment Networking, Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham were all floated as potential hosts when the possibility was aired in September that the event could leave Leeds after the 2024 event.
UKREiiF attracted 9,500 official and fringe delegates in 2023 and this is expected to increase to 10,000 to 12,000 in 2024.
While the event as a whole has been warmly received, a report by Arup found that Leeds’ hotels were completely full during this year’s three-day event, while concerns have been raised over the crowdedness of sessions and the potential for bad weather to exacerbate that.
However, following the ”exploratory process” the organisers have now announced Leeds will host the event into the future in addition to hosting in 2024, again at Leeds Dock and the Royal Armouries, between 21 May and 23 May.
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Cllr James Lewis, leader of Leeds City Council, said: “We are delighted that UKREiiF is staying here in Leeds and we are proud to be able to enable this Leeds based scale up, as it continues to realise its rapid growth.
“UKREiiF represents a significant platform for highlighting the city and our dedication to fostering innovation, inclusive growth and resilience. It demonstrates the art of the possible when private and public sector come together, working in tandem with industry leaders and fellow innovators, to drive positive change with a more diverse delegation.
“Hosting the largest real estate conference of its kind in the UK is a testament to the growing reputation of Leeds and West Yorkshire allowing us to showcase our region’s vibrant economy, our regeneration market, and development opportunities; together with our ambitions for a healthier, greener and inclusive future for the city.
“We’ve been blown away by the positive feedback about the city from the many thousands of delegates we have welcomed each year, and we look forward to extending a warm Yorkshire welcome to many more, as UKREiiF continues to go from strength to strength. People knew about us, and the success of the last few years, but they really know our story now and we are delighted to showcase this work, our changing city and the ambitions we have for the future.”
Chief executive of UKREiiF, Keith Griffiths said: “I must firstly thank all of the shortlisted cities for their interest in hosting UKREiiF – we saw some excellent venues and potential sites for UKREiiF and any of them could have successfully hosted UKREiiF, especially with the support of the fantastic teams we met along the way showing how important public and private sector collaboration is.
“But overall we felt Leeds, with some really exciting propositions for growth, was the right city to host UKREiiF building on what we expect to be an excellent event in 2024.”
Tom Riordan, chief executive of Leeds City Council, added: “A big thank you to the UKREiiF team, the council and WYCA teams, the Royal Armouries and our Team Leeds partners for all the hard work and effort that has gone into hosting the first two UKREiiF events and also the bid process.
“As always in the city, our power through partnership and focus on collaboration has proved very successful and we are looking forward to welcoming more delegates in 2024 and seeing the conference grow bigger and better in the next few years.”