Town centre regeneration
The Council’s Cabinet approved a report aimed at supporting the regeneration of town centres in Flintshire at a meeting on Tuesday, 14 May.
Town centres across the UK are facing challenging economic conditions impacting upon their sustainability. This has been further compounded, significantly so in Flintshire, by the withdrawal of retail banking services from high streets impacting on their scale and vitality.
A series of proposals for Flintshire town centres are intended to increase the diversity of uses in town centres, strengthen the role of local stakeholder groups and support businesses to adapt and compete more effectively and these include:
- developing long term plans with stakeholders in each town;
- investing in frontline service outlets in town centre locations to improve customer access to services and increase foot fall;
- supporting local stakeholder projects including heritage initiatives
- environmental improvements and local promotion;
- guiding and responding to market interest in town centres;
- delivering property grants and streetscape enhancements to improve appearance.
Businesses would also be helped to adapt to the changing economic climate by:
- support for business networking and shared learning;
- providing grant or loan funding for property development (as resources allow);
- increasing the availability and affordability of high speed broadband connectivity;
- signposting businesses to Welsh Government support programmes, especially for digital skills.
Support would also be given, where viable, to creating Business Improvement Districts (BID) and the feasibility of developing a BID in Mold town centre is currently being investigated.
Cllr. Derek Butler, Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said:
“Town centres need to reflect a new reality where only a small proportion of local earnings are spent in town centres and where roles such as service provision, space for social interaction and living space are becoming increasingly important.
“The Council has invested significant resources in strengthening local community leadership for example working with Holywell stakeholders on the trial reopening of the High Street to traffic, supporting Buckley Town Council in developing a long term action plan for the town and bringing together Flint stakeholders to guide the regeneration of the town.
“The delivery of the North Wales Growth Vision, through the initial phase of Growth Deal capital projects and wider programmes of work also has the potential to bring significant benefits to our town centres.”