Have your say on ambitious multimillion-pound transformation plans for Boscombe

Posted on Monday 17 August 2020

A new urban neighbourhood boasting a thriving hub of public squares, arts and culture, cafes, shops, homes and places to work, be seen and visit, all form part of the new transformational plans for Boscombe.

BCP Council, on behalf of the Bournemouth Towns Fund Board, is inviting local residents, businesses and visitors to the town to have their say on ambitious plans to transform Bournemouth as part of the government’s £3.6 billion Towns Fund programme.

Under the plans Gladstone Road and Hawkwood Road would be redeveloped to make way for new family homes.

The Sovereign Shopping Centre would be replaced by a contemporary mixed use neighbourhood of streets and high quality commercial units and homes. There will be a brand new purpose built public square where a dedicated programme of festivals and events would bring people together. These buildings could boast mixed use commercial, retail, leisure and residential elements all working side by side.

Preserving and enhancing the setting and use of unique heritage assets such as the Royal Arcade and Royal Ballrooms (O2 Academy) feature prominently in the plans with ambitions to bring the Royal Arcade back into use by seamlessly combining contemporary new work space, skills and learning as well as arts and culture in this historic yet under used building.

Haviland Road between Palmerston Road (Lidl) and Haviland Road West could be restored as a street with generous pavements, cycle lanes, bus stops and tree planting all leading up to a new community hall and gardens where people can relax.

Providing better infrastructure to encourage more active travel and improving the links between Boscombe town centre, the seafront, Pokesdown Train Station and AFC Bournemouth could also be funded through the investment.

With a network of new open spaces, the plans will create new places for people to spend time and enjoy. Furthermore, the plans could also see the council seeking to purchase the Kings Park bowling centre for health and leisure activities, whilst retaining the skills and learning offer at this site.

Building on the area’s well-established creative industries, the proposals could also see the expansion of the smart place pilot currently underway at Lansdowne, helping to attract more businesses and investors to Boscombe and so creating more jobs for local people.

Overall around 560 new homes, 6,700sqm of retail and leisure floor space and 4,800 sqm of commercial, community and health floor space have been earmarked as part of the long term plans which aim to strengthen the local economy of Boscombe and revitalise the area as it builds for the future post COVID-19.

Councillor Mark Howell, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Culture, BCP Council, said; “I am delighted to launch these transformational plans for Boscombe, which have been produced in collaboration with the local community. If we win the necessary government funding, these ambitious proposals should realise Boscombe’s potential. The bid development process has shown what can be achieved when we work together with a focus on place-making and with future generations in mind.”

Bournemouth is one of 101 towns across the UK on track to secure a new ‘Town Deal’ which could see a significant investment of around £25million in each place. To secure the funding a draft Town Investment Plan for Boscombe and the surrounding area has been drawn up. Now, the public are being invited to have their say and help shape the final proposals due to be submitted to government later this year.

Councillor Howell, added; “This fund presents a rare opportunity to secure the major investment Boscombe needs. Funding would help to create new jobs and homes, and be focused on regenerating the high street, delivering family housing, enhancing digital connectivity, developing skills and culture, and building a community.”

To view the plans and have your say visit bcpcouncil.gov.uk/townsfund. The consultation will be open until Monday 14 September 2020.

Public engagement events

A series of public engagement events will be held where people can view the plans, meet the team, and ask questions. The team will be hosting a stall on Boscombe Market on:

  • Thursday 20 August
  • Thursday 27 August
  • Saturday 29 August
  • Thursday 3 September
  • Saturday 5 September
  • Thursday 10 September