Some of the plans outlined include the transformation of the railway station into the gateway for the centre. Initial plans will see the car park renovated into an open and welcoming area which will provide a vital new arrival statement at the station.
Other proposals include revamping the current market area to help make it a vibrant location all week long and not just on market days. The current plans for this area also aim to make the most of the iconic listed buildings, namely the Corn Exchange and the Wool Market, to provide a new and enhanced offer to retail traders and customers and to host more events to bring more people into the area.
Business leaders from Doncaster and across the region came together last week at the second Doncaster Ambassador’s event, organised by the recently formed Place Board. They heard from the Mayor, Andrew Fisher from David Lock Associates and Paul Smith from Virgin Trains East Coast about the transformational plans for the urban centre.
Mayor Ros Jones, said: “I am delighted to be able to launch the Doncaster Urban Centre Masterplan. A thriving centre is key to the success of any place but this does not just happen. There needs to be a comprehensive plan which is achievable and will make a real difference. That is what we have developed for Doncaster!
“We have been working very closely with David Lock Associates and partners to outline how the town centre needs to develop to ensure its future prosperity. The final document, which will be fully released in early 2017 will not only shape the planning and design of the town centre, but mark our intention for change.
“Doncaster is an ambitious place and we have delivered many successful regeneration projects over the last 10 years. We already have world class assets that cities across the country would aspire to have. These include our East Coast Mainline railway station, superb motorway links, the UKs fastest growing airport outside of London and attractions such as the Yorkshire Wildlife Park and racecourse.
“We have a bold vision and one we know we can deliver on, but we cannot do this alone. We will need the support and investment from partners and the private sector to ensure we propel Doncaster to the next level.”
Andrew Fisher, Partner from David Lock Associates, said: “We were asked by the Mayor and her cabinet to take an independent look at Doncaster centre and the development opportunities that were available there. Doncaster is a prime location and has a history of attracting big businesses to the area. Now is the time to build on this success and ensure that even more people come to Doncaster to live, work and relax. Over the next few years Doncaster really is the place to watch!”
Paul Smith, Commercial Manager for Virgin Trains on its east coast route, said: “We’re pleased to be working with the council to deliver this high quality transformation of the station in Doncaster. This is a strategic connection point for Virgin Trains, and, we’ll be able to increase capacity on the network and have connections through to London every 20 minutes, following the introduction of our new fleet of 65 Virgin Azuma trains.”
Next year, along with the full Doncaster Urban Centre Masterplan, details will also be released about plans for regeneration in other town centres across the borough.
Mayor Ros Jones continued: “Next year not only will we be revealing the full Doncaster Urban Centre Masterplan but also information about how we aim to support other communities across the borough. Big things will certainly be happening in 2017.”
For further details of the Doncaster Urban Centre Masterplan visit www.doncaster.gov.uk/urbanmasterplan