A major scheme to transform Nuneaton town centre and boost economic growth and jobs has been given the green light.
Warwickshire County Council and Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council are working together in partnership to deliver the Transforming Nuneaton Programme to create a vibrant, attractive and prosperous town.
The forward-thinking scheme has now received £7.5 million of funding from the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) to kickstart the programme of transformation.
This funding package will focus on the development of Vicarage Street and the area around the railway station, creating a modern, high-quality and vibrant gateway to Nuneaton. Other key developments include Horiba MIRA Technology Park and the growth of Bermuda Park employment site.
The plans also involve improving the use of public space in Nuneaton town centre and investing in the road, rail and transport infrastructure to improve connectivity in the North/South corridor.
In addition, flood protection will be improved in the town centre to protect businesses and more sites will be opened for other uses including housing schemes.
The overall vision for the town has been encapsulated within an outline concept plan which is being shared with businesses and developers as part of the Councils' engagement process. Feedback from the commercial sector and other stakeholders will allow the plan to be refined and developed with the aim of encouraging future investment.
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Leader of Warwickshire County Council and portfolio holder for economic development, said: “The county council is committed to working with our partners towards the development of Nuneaton town centre. This £7.5million funding will act as a catalyst to attracting private sector investment to the town.
"We have very high ambitions for the town – the work that is about to start will do a great deal to create a vibrant, modern atmosphere that is welcoming, making it a great place to visit and do business.”
Cllr Julie Jackson, Leader of Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council, said: “We are absolutely clear on our vision for Nuneaton and have put in place plans to make that vision a reality. The Transforming Nuneaton programme sets out how we will grow the town centre economy and transform our town to attract greater investment, further improving the quality of life for our residents.
“Nuneaton is ambitious, innovative and open for business; we want to demonstrate high quality, vibrancy and creativity at every level, we want to inspire people with our plans and I think that we’ve made a very good start by attracting such a major cash injection.”
Jonathan Browning, Chair of the CWLEP, said unlocking key development sites within Nuneaton town centre would transform the area.
He said: “Investing in Nuneaton town centre will support economic growth within the town and the wider area.
“Creating high-quality easily accessible housing in the town centre along with diverse leisure opportunities would boost footfall to the town centre and increase the number of people working there.
“These regeneration plans involve creating the infrastructure for Nuneaton to thrive and supporting the growth of existing businesses as well as improving its potential to attract developers and investors in the future.”
Nuneaton MP Marcus Jones said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for Nuneaton, we have £7.5 million backing from the government and some significant development sites owned by both Councils.
“Everyone must now work together to attract the investment opportunities that are undoubtedly out there for Nuneaton, timing is crucial and all the stops should be pulled out to get new development moving.”
For the latest news on the Transforming Nuneaton programme, please go to www.warwickshire.gov.uk/transformingnuneaton and follow @NBBCouncil and @Warwickshire_CC on Twitter.