18th Nov, 2019

Ambitious plans to regenerate Redditch to go in front of the council

Harry Leach 6th Nov, 2019 Updated: 6th Nov, 2019

AMBITIOUS plans to regenerate Redditch town centre will go in front of executive members next Monday, November 11.

The investment plan focuses on four quarters in the town, ‘Station and Residential’, ‘Education and Enterprise’, ‘Retail and Leisure’ and ‘Public Sector and Cultural’.

Within those quarters will be key areas such as Redditch Railway Station, Church Road, the library and the old market near Debenhams.

The council says it is aware that the Railway Station, for example, could be improved by being refurbished or landscaped.

And during a consultation residents said it is a problem that no direct trains go to Worcester, London or other key areas, making Redditch feel like a ‘dead end’.

Borough Council leader Matt Dormer said he would like to see cafes, residential homes and offices near the railway and would consider moving the town’s library under one hub.

“There’s been a lot of talk about the Town Hall and whether or not it’s going to be demolished.

“But for me it doesn’t make any sense as the bricks alone are worth too much money.

“However, the council could potentially move out of the Town Hall and instead join the library under one hub elsewhere.

“The Town Hall could then be used for other services such as a hotel or a bar.

“We really just want to push on with this now and make the town, which is ideally located next to Birmingham, as good as it possibly can be.”

The investment plan will used to entice the Government into awarding Redditch a large sum of the £25million Town’s Fund.

Cash would then be used to invest in the future of Redditch by ‘opening it up, creating open spaces and clearer routes’.

The Government has already made £173,000 available to the council to support its preparation of the investment plan, including setting up a Governance Board and public consultations.

Coun Dormer added that the plans were not just for the town centre, but other district areas such as Winyates and Matchborough too.

“We still want to get people’s opinions on what they would like to see in this town.

“These are ambitious plans designed to unlock Redditch’s potential and strengthen its appeal to people as a destination to work, live and enjoy themselves in.”

Coun David Thain, whose portfolio covers corporate management and finance said it is imperative the council gets it right now for future generations.

“We hope that we can start consulting with our residents on what they would like to see in the town over the next few weeks.”

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