• Kingston Council hire designers for town centre revamp

    February 26, 2020
  • Kingston Council (RBK) and Kingston First have recruited design consultants to help craft a “new vision” for the town centre.Design consultancy Arup will partner with RBK and the Kingston First business support group to “develop a new vision for the town centre in the next 15 years”, a spokesperson for RBK said.The plan is to collaborate with the design experts on how to improve the town centre’s regeneration through new aspects that promote employment, culture, education, business and transport.A shortlist of some of the key sites to be examined under the new partnership was released by RBK as they made the announcement on Tuesday (February 18).

    The Cattle Market Car Park, Surrey House, Eden Quarter, Guildhall and Ashdown Road Car Park will all be looked at in this regard over the next six months, according to RBK.”Town centres across the country are needing to adapt to a change in the retail landscape with the growth in online shopping,” Liberal Democrat Council Leader Liz Green said.”In addition, there is a need for more homes as the population in London continues to rise – Kingston is no different.”As the borough’s largest town centre, it will need to play an important role in providing an economic, social, and cultural offer for the entire borough in the future,” she added.

    The partnership with Arup is the latest in a series of moves designed to grease the wheels of regeneration in the centre of Kingston.Last year, the council and Kingston First joined forces with Kingston University (KU) and the Greater London Authority (GLA) to create the ‘Reimagining Kingston Town Centgre’s Streets and Spaces Strategy’ that was similar in its intentions to this latest development.

    The recent Citizens’ Assembly meetings held in the borough also provided insights from residents that RBK said would be considered going forward.”I am looking forward to working with Kingston First and Arup to develop a vision that fits with our aspirations and ensure that we preserve the very best of Kingston as well accommodate for a wider range of users in the town centre,” Cllr Green added.Kirsten Henly, Kingston First’s CEO, said that the group were “delighted” to be involved in this next stage of pushing the redevelopment of the town centre forward.

    Meanwhile, Arup’s Integrated City Planning Director Joanna Rowelle said the project would help guarantee Kingston Town Centre’s “long-term economic success”.”This is a priority project for Kingston Council and our team brings a range of multidisciplinary expertise to help them further develop their vision for Kingston Town Centre, creating a set of proposals that will form the basis for its long-term economic success,” she said.”The town centre has a long history and lots of positive assets.”We will work with the council and community to build on these existing strengths, while also identifying opportunities to deliver a vision for a thriving town centre that puts local people’s needs at its heart.”

    Special Thanks to Surrey Comet for their Article- https://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/18244070.kingston-council-hire-designers-town-centre-revamp/