The final version of the Bury St Edmunds Town Centre Masterplan was revealed this week, after months of public meetings and amendments.
Consultation periods for the masterplan took place in February and August, which resulted in over 8000 comments from members of the public detailing what improvements they would like to see in the town centre. Subsequent amendments to the plans were then made.
The final version was released on Tuesday and will be discussed at a meeting of St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s Cabinet on Tuesday, December 5.
The Cabinet will be recommended to approve that the revised masterplan go to full council to adopt on Tuesday, December 19. But the council say that more consultation on the individual projects is still to come after the plans are adopted.
Cllr Alaric Pugh, chairman of a masterplan working group, said: “The masterplan has set the vision, the ambition and the direction for what people want their town to become, but of course we need to be careful that this achieves what it set out to do – ensuring the success of our town centre for years to come as a place people use for work, leisure, to shop and to live in.
“So there will be considerable further work, including research and consultation, to investigate the impact of different types of improvements for pedestrians and optimal use of town centre space for all users including, very importantly, all businesses.”
The masterplan’s aim is to make improvements to nine ‘character areas’ in the town, while protecting those which are part of the town’s identity.
Plans include pedestrianising Buttermarket and Cornhill, as well as St Andrews Street South, to provide better links between the the arc shopping centre and the rest of the town centre.
The masterplan also seeks to improve the gateway to the town by improving transport links between the train station and Tayfen Road, while also making the route more attractive to pedestrians by adding shops.