Residents are being urged to engage with a consultation to help shape the future of Harrogate town centre.
The Station Gateway project could see funding of £7.8m spent transforming the bus and rail interchange and the public space around them.
Proposals also include reducing Station Parade to just one lane for cars, allowing more space for cycling lanes, to encourage more people to use public transport or to walk or cycle.
The plans have been put forward by North Yorkshire County and Harrogate Borough Councils, in partnership with West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Craven and Selby district councils, as part of a £31m grant awarded through the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF). As well as the Harrogate proposals, the project includes changes for Selby and Skipton’s stations.
North Yorkshire County Councillor Don Mackenzie, executive member for access, said:
“Improving the gateways to these towns will not only make them more attractive, but will also provide infrastructure for sustainable travel. We have looked at barriers to people accessing public transport, cycling and walking and devised schemes to address these.
“I hope people will have their say through the consultation and take advantage of the online events to learn more and to ask questions.”
- James Street pedestrianisation back on the cards in major town centre scheme
- Row breaks out on first day of ‘Station Gateway’ consultation
Public events are being held online for residents to hear more about the plans and to ask questions about them. The Harrogate events take place on Wednesday, March 3 and Wednesday, March 10, both at 6pm.
The consultation runs until Wednesday, March 24, and anyone planning to take part is encouraged to engage with one of the online sessions beforehand. To find out more, click here.
Councillor Phil Ireland, Harrogate Borough Council’s cabinet member for carbon reduction and sustainability, said:
“Through the Harrogate Congestion Study, it was clear the community wanted to see improvements to walking, cycling and public transport prioritised. The TCF project is the first step to delivering this and I’m pleased that the hard work and determination of council officers has paid off, and helped secure around £8million for the Harrogate bid.”
The authorities involved have promised that public feedback will be used to help shape the next stage of the plans.
They have already come under fire from business groups, including Harrogate BID, Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce and Independent Harrogate, who said they money could be better spent improving other areas such as Cambridge Street. However, the TCF can only be used for projects relating to transport.
Retailers on Albert Row, which runs along Station Parade, have also raised concerns about how the proposals will affect the area nearest their businesses, saying they could not fairly comment without more information.
What’s your view of the Station Gateway proposal? Email [email protected] with your thoughts and we may include it on our letters page, Stray Views, published each Sunday.