11th Dec, 2018

City’s 2040 masterplan revealed

Rob George 10th Oct, 2018

A BOLD vision to bring more than 8,000 jobs and build more than 3,000 new homes in the city has been revealed by council chiefs in a bid to provide a £385million a year cash injection to Worcester’s economy.

New transport routes, parks and public spaces, housing and business premises and a radical revamp of the city’s picturesque Riverside are at the heart of a new vision for Worcester by the year 2040.

The ambitious proposals are contained in the new City Centre masterplan revealed today (Wednesday) as ambitious council chiefs seek to put Worcester on the map as a national and international tourist destination and offer more employment, housing and leisure opportunities for residents.

Nine new parks, squares and public spaces, 14km of new cycling routes and the creation of 8,610 new jobs and 3,137 new homes all feature in the blueprint which has been devised by Worcester City Council, Worcestershire LEP, Worcestershire County Council, landowners, businesses, the education sector, public bodies and others.

City chiefs revealed the Riverside could become the heart of leisure, recreation, living and other activity as well as providing improved connections across the river to tie the city together.

A new four-star hotel, houses, a new multi-storey car park, restaurants, bars, offices and even a new riverside theatre venue are among the ideas being put forward in the draft proposals.

Two new pedestrian cycle routes and an improved pedestrian and cycle path across the existing Worcester Bridge and the introduction of the Serpentine Riverside Walk that will extend out into the river beneath the bridge’s eastern arch are also proposed.

A new improved walkway is proposed along the railway arches from Foregate Street Station to the Riverside and The Hive is being suggested while extension of Cathedral Square will provide improved links between the Cathedral and the core of the city centre.

Council chiefs also hope to transform a forgotten but historically significant part of the city with homes, job opportunities and a multi-storey car park off Carden Street and a residential quarter around Cromwell Street, Padmore Street and Lowesmoor Wharf.

The historic area around Shrub Hill Station will be reinvented as a new high-quality office quarter, with employment-led developments such as a transport interchange and the creation of a new plaza at Shrub Hill Station.

Leaders of all three political parties on Worcester City Council, Coun Marc Bayliss (Conservative), Coun Adrian Gregson (Labour) and Coun Louis Stephen (Green) have backed the plans.

“Our aim is to create a successful and growing cathedral and university city, with more homes, businesses and jobs; a city with prestige tourist, education and retail attractions; and a place that maintains its ‘city in the country’ feel, its valued heritage assets and environmental quality,” a joint statement read.

Visit www.worcester.gov.uk/masterplan to make comments on the proposals.

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