Our plans to revive Guildford town centre and restore it as the flourishing and vibrant jewel in the borough’s crown continued earlier this week with a public exhibition introducing our vision for North Street and a new bus station.
Over 200 people registered to attend the exhibition, which can be watched at www.northstreetregeneration.co.uk. We will continue to invite residents to share their ideas and shape our proposals throughout the planning process.
The exciting mixed-use development will regenerate brownfield land within the boundaries of North Street, Leapale Road and Commercial Road to create a new heart for Guildford and encourage greater use of public transport.
We are working on the project with award-winning architects JTP and St Edward Homes, a partnership of Berkeley Homes and M&G Real Estate, one of the world’s largest property investors and owners of the Friary Centre, which is adjacent to the development site.
Lead Councillor for Major Projects, Cllr John Rigg says:
“This is an exciting moment for Guildford as we reach the first key milestone in securing a high-quality new quarter for our historic town centre. We hope to conclude our negotiations with St Edward very soon and pave the way for them to acquire all of the land required for the proposed development. With their enviable record for delivery, we have confidence in St Edward as the partner to turn these ideas into reality but the scheme needs to be right for Guildford.
“With town centres across the country struggling, and the impact of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic likely to be felt for years to come, this project is a vital part of our Town Centre Masterplan to keep our town thriving and bring some positivity back to Guildford. We are considering all areas from transport to heritage and homes. We will work to ensure the centre recovers not only from the impact of the pandemic but from its recent decline to bring significant benefits for our communities and businesses.”
He continues: “The future is our young people and those growing up here or moving into the area. They need new homes with high-quality public space, leisure and cultural experiences, and we aim to deliver this vision. Our ambition is to make Guildford great for everyone.”
As well as a new bus station, the development will provide homes, plus improved footpath and cycle routes, new leisure opportunities in high-quality public areas, create new jobs and investment in the local economy and promote biodiversity in an area which celebrates the rich history and culture of Guildford.
This development is part of our robust plan to revive Guildford town centre. Economic growth and regeneration are integral parts of the initiative to reinvigorate our county town which includes a proactive masterplan delivered by a dedicated board of specialist officers, councillors and consultants. Specific areas of improvement will be:
• Economic strength
• Transport (all modes)
• Environment, Public Realm and Climate Change
• Society and Arts
• Flood Defence
The plan will address existing conditions which have negatively affected the town centre, including reviewing infrastructure and our lack of open spaces along the River Wey. It will be responsive to climate change, current traffic levels and environmental issues. It will review the downturn in retail activity, deliver sustainable communities as set out in Guildford’s adopted Local Plan and build economic resilience for the town.