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Improvements to Horley town centre agreed

Additional Restrictions Grants

Four projects to help revitalise Horley town centre have been given the go-ahead l by Reigate and Banstead Borough Council. ‘Delivering change in Horley’ programme will deliver a set of four interrelated projects to:

• Redevelop the High Street car park to provide new homes

• Make public space improvements to the High Street

• Refurbish the subway between the High Street and Station Approach

• Install pay-on-exit car parking at the Victoria Road and Central car parks.

High Street Car Park redevelopment

New homes are planned for the council’s underutilised High Street car park, along with commercial space for retail, leisure or business premises. The development presents an opportunity to provide a choice of home sizes, types and tenure, including more affordable rent homes for local people.

The site is allocated in the council’s Development Management Plan for redevelopment and the project also supports the aims of its Housing Delivery Strategy.

Feasibility work for the project will take place later this year and, subject to the outcome and approval to proceed by the Executive, a planning application is expected to be submitted in early summer 2021.

Public space improvements

Public space improvements along the High Street, between the precinct and Horley subway, will enhance its look and feel and how pedestrians and cyclists flow around the town. It is hoped the enhancements will boost confidence in the town, helping to attract more visitors and investment.

Improvements are likely to include new street furniture, planting and signage, as well as measures, promote cycling and improve connectivity for pedestrians through investment in pavements and crossings. They will build on the recent improvements in the precinct.

Design of the scheme should be finished in summer 2021 and the works completed by spring 2022. It will be delivered in partnership with Surrey County Council as the local highways authority.

Refurbishing the subway

The refurbishment of Horley subway will improve accessibility for pedestrians and cyclists and create a safer, well-lit and more welcoming space. It will also improve the condition of the structure, which was built in 1905, and address drainage and flooding issues.

A feasibility survey will be carried out later this year to establish the full extent of the works required, followed by design development. Works are expected to get underway in late 2021 and be complete by summer 2022.

Pay-on-exit car parking

Pay on exit parking will be installed at both Victoria Road and Central car parks to generate more and longer visits to the town, increasing spending locally and boosting the local economy and vibrancy of the town centre.

The current and pay and display machines will be replaced with more convenient, modern and cost-effective parking payment systems. Installation will start in early 2021 and be complete in April 2021.

Eddy Humphreys, executive member for place and economic prosperity, said: “This package of projects is great news for Horley and promises to bring a range of benefits for the town. They will help the Council to deliver our aspirations to invest in the town centre, drive economic prosperity, deliver more affordable homes and work with partners to create strong, safe and welcoming communities, as set out in our corporate plan ‘Reigate and Banstead 2025’.

“It’s a challenging time for high streets across the country with people changing the way they shop. This investment is even more important than ever, with businesses and communities hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. I hope residents and businesses will welcome the plans to boost the town.”

The council plans to seek community feedback on design proposals for the public realm improvements, subway refurbishment and emerging proposals for the High Street car park in due course.

The progromme is being funded through the Council’s Capital Programme and Section 106 developer contributions from Surrey County Council, together totalling over £1.29m. It has also received £229,600 from Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) Local Growth Fund following a successful bid for funds.

Horley Town Council supported the Council’s bid to the LEP for the projects.

David Powell, Town Mayor and Council Chairman, on behalf of Horley Town Council, said: “Horley Town Council is very pleased to hear about the planned delivery of regeneration projects in Horley town centre. Any investment into vital redevelopment to benefit residents and businesses is to be welcomed and so is great news to help reinvigorate the town through contemporary urban planning and to fuel economic growth to shape a brighter future for the Horley community.”

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