Four short-listed for Stevenage
11 th August 2003
Stevenage Borough Council and national regeneration agency, English Partnerships, have short-listed four bidders for the final stage of a competition to regenerate Stevenage town centre.
Henry Boot Developments, Morley Fund Management, Wilson Bowden and ING Real Estate/Stanhope, will have until October to submit detailed proposals for an £80 million phased development programme that could take up to 10 years to complete.
The Council and English Partnerships want to introduce a greater diversity of uses into the centre including more than 19,000 sq. m of additional retail space; leisure, restaurants, affordable homes, improved public space, enhanced community facilities and a new public transport interchange.
Peter Grant, Regeneration Manager for Stevenage Borough Council says: “We recognise that the town centre will need to undergo a substantial change to make it more sustainable and vibrant. We want to create a much more people-focused centre that pays greater attention to quality public space and improved living and leisure facilities. Stevenage is an important sub-regional centre and we therefore need to create a high-calibre environment capable of serving the needs of a growing population.”
A preferred developer is expected to be selected by the end of November with plans going out to public consultation before the end of the year. Dennis Hone, Regional Director for English Partnerships, says that a number of options are being considered in terms of the structure of any future deal with a development partner. “We are taking a flexible approach, we obviously want the best scheme but we need to make sure that it is financially and logistically realistic. We will consider a range of development options that could include a joint venture agreement involving the Council and English Partnerships.”
Stevenage was the first new town to be designated in 1946 and is one of a number of town centre regeneration programmes in which English Partnerships is involved. The design brief is in line with planning policy guidance PPG6 (Town Centres and Retail Developments) and in the wider context of the government’s Sustainable Communities Plan that advocates the need to create well-designed, high quality and attractive places for people to live and work.
Chesterton and Lambert Smith Hampton are acting as development advisors on behalf of Stevenage Borough Council and English Partnerships. Planning and design consultants EDAW have produced the design brief and are the lead consultants on the project.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
English Partnerships is the national regeneration agency supporting high quality sustainable growth across the country. The four key areas of English Partnerships’ activity are: sustainable regeneration, housing, strategic brownfield redevelopment and best practice. We are a key delivery agency for the urban renaissance and the government’s new Sustainable Communities Plan working in conjunction with public and private sector partners. Major initiatives include the National Coalfields Programme, Urban Regeneration Companies and Millennium Communities.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
Tel: 01908 353656
Stevenage Borough Council
Tel: 01438 242168