Saturday, August 20, 2022

Lincolnshire town submits £20m bid to level up centre

Plans to regenerate and revitalise Boston’s town centre have been included as part of Boston Borough Council’s £20m bid to the Government’s Levelling Up Fund.

The Levelling Up Fund was introduced by government earlier in the year to help drive capital investment in projects that have been identified as priorities by local stakeholders and will have the most impact within their local area, such as improvements to transport, town centre investment and expanding an area’s cultural offer.

Ultimately the fund seeks to ensure areas that have traditionally been left behind are supported and each area across the country has been assigned a priority ranking, with Boston identified within the highest priority group.

Over recent months the Borough Council have been working with partners to develop a bid that focusses on town centre regeneration and seeks to increase footfall, attract visitors, and enhance the look and feel of the area.

In the bid to government, the Borough Council have included the following projects:

  • Creation of a new integrated hub and learning centre – land and buildings within the PE21 area of the town would be developed into a hub and learning centre, which would create sustainable employment and help increase footfall within the core of the town.
  • Development of new urban living with contemporary housing, hospitality and retail uses – this would include using the redeveloped spaces to create new town centre residential space with bespoke development of retail and civic uses, with the aim of introducing a 24 hour opening agenda to the heart of the town.
  • Town Centre greening project – a programme of works to undertake urban landscaping to create a park area within the town centre and market place. This would be accompanied by works to bring Boston’s town centre heritage and leisure to life, helping to attract more visitors and increase visitor spend. This would be further complemented by investment in leisure boat moorings on the River Witham’s Southern Terrace, allowing easier access for sea going leisure boats to stop off in the town.

In developing the bid, the Borough Council have worked to identify projects that will work in tandem with investments being made thanks to the Towns Fund – through which the Borough received £21.9m – and have selected projects identified through the Towns Fund and PE21 consultation process, to create a combined package of investments with a value in excess of £40m that will deliver transformational change to the town.

Councillor Nigel Welton, Boston Borough Council Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Economic Development and Planning, said: “This bid is all about delivering long lasting and meaningful change for our town centre.

“Through these projects, and those being taken forward through the Towns Fund, we can help ensure that our town centre is sustainable, vibrant, and attractive.

“I’m delighted with the bid has been put together, and it once again has showed the value of our Alliance with East Lindsey District Council as our shared teams have been able to develop quality, concurrent bids for the two areas.

“We want to ensure that Boston is a prosperous place to live, do business, and visit and this bid can help us do exactly that – creating a town centre that is set for the future and attractive to residents, visitors, and business alike.”

The Borough Council anticipate hearing the outcome of their bid from government in the Autumn.

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