Two new Development Corporations to supercharge progress in Hartlepool and Middlesbrough have taken another step closer.

Legislation was officially laid before Parliament for the towns’ respective Mayoral Development Corporations on Monday 6th February. The move brings the new zones – designed to transform each of the towns by driving investment and cutting red tape – nearer fruition.

The two Corporations are set to be up and running before the end of this financial year.

It comes after Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, recently endorsed both the MDCs to secure new powers.

Middlesbrough’s Corporation will focus on the town centre, Middlehaven and the Zetland Historic Quarter to tie them together more closely. It will also include crucial assets such as the Boho zone, Middlesbrough Station, the Northern School of Art, Centre Square, Teesside University and much more.

Middlesbrough Football Club, Union Village, at Gresham and the area behind Sainsbury’s between the A66 and North Road are also included within the zone’s boundaries.

Meanwhile, Hartlepool’s Corporation will encompass Oakesway Business Park, retail and leisure land – including Mill House Leisure Centre and Middleton Grange Shopping Centre, with public realm and civic buildings.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “I am delighted that our Mayoral Development Corporations for both Middlesbrough and Hartlepool have been fully and loudly backed by the Government – and this latest laying of orders brings them another step closer to reality. We have bold and ambitious plans to supercharge investment in both towns by slashing red tape and delivering faster on priorities.

“We want to make Hartlepool a cultural capital, and we’ve already set a marker down in our Gresham plans with our vision to make Middlesbrough a place where people want to live, work and study.

“Both MDCs will come at no extra cost to the taxpayer or have any impact on council tax rates. The sky really is the limit for what we can achieve.”