Harrogate BID says amended Station Gateway scheme ‘should proceed’
Last updated Nov 3, 2023
The Station Gateway scheme.

Harrogate Business Improvement District has said the town’s £11.2 million Station Gateway scheme should proceed amid plans to scrap major elements of the project.

Yesterday, Cllr Keane Duncan, executive councillor for highways at North Yorkshire Council, said reducing Station Parade to one lane and pedestrianising James Street would need be dropped from the scheme in order for it “to be successful”.

The move comes as council officials are currently drawing up alternative options for the project after the previous proposals were paused last month.

In a statement, Harrogate BID chair Dan Siddle and BID manager Matthew Chapman said the organisation would back the scheme under the new plans.

They said:

“Whilst we accept the Station Gateway Project has been a divided subject we believe, after consulting with sector representatives within the BID membership, that the project should now proceed.

“The local authority has listened to the concerns raised, adapted the project to a plan that works for the majority and given assurances that the finished product will further enhance the Harrogate welcome and experience.”

Read more:

Mr Siddle and Mr Chapman added that the organisation felt the £11.2 million worth of funding would be “amiss to reject”.

The statement added:

“This level of investment to town and city centres is a once in a generation opportunity that Harrogate BID feels would be amiss to reject. Looking at the data that demonstrates how and where town centres are heading the Station Gateway Project will be the foundation of many more centrally funded projects that keeps Harrogate as a key destination for residents and tourists alike.

“As an organisation we must stress we do not see this project as anti-car or pro-cycling, purely one which will give people more choice on how they wish to travel to and move around our town.

“Furthermore, this funding, which has to be used towards this gateway scheme has earmarked some fundamental and positive improvements to public realm that we fully support if, as promised, is finished to a first-class standard.”

Full proposals on how the gateway scheme will be amended are expected to be put before senior North Yorkshire councillors at a later date.

The council halted the scheme immediately after lawyers acting on behalf of local property firm Hornbeam Park Developments launched a judicial review.

As a result, the authority announced it would draw up alternative options which would focus on “a high quality pedestrian-focussed public realm scheme, with improved access into the bus station, and better traffic flow through co-ordinated signal timings”.