Town Centre Regeneration
Members of the Community and Enterprise Overview and Scrutiny Committee will review a report on town centre regeneration when they meet.
The report includes a review on progress on delivering the priorities for town centre regeneration and asks for support on the Council’s future strategic direction.
Nationally, town centres are facing challenging economic circumstances due to changing behaviour by shoppers and the retail industry. The effect on Flintshire town centres has not been as significant, although, the loss of high street banks has been very significant in several Flintshire towns.
The Council has always actively supported town centres although the scale of the regeneration service in Flintshire has reduced significantly due to budget pressures. The service currently employs a single full time officer which limits capacity to develop projects, and meet Welsh Government ambitions. For this reason, it is proposed that the service employs an additional senior officer with relevant experience.
Flintshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Councillor Derek Butler, said:
“This increased capacity would allow, amongst other things, work on targeting vacant or underused properties in town and diversifying land uses to maintain the vitality and viability of town centres.
“Much good work has been done already with the Townscape Heritage Initiative in Holywell, the masterplans for Flint and Buckley as well as renovations and improvements in Mold, Queensferry and Connah’s Quay. Moving forward, we need a more ambitious approach which has been identified as a key priority in the Council Plan.”
This represents a step change in the approach by the Council that will allow a new strategic approach to regenerating each town to create more successful and sustainable places. Combined with the Welsh Government new policy approaches to prioritising town centres, the refreshed Council approach will encourage all parts of the Council to consider how, through their service delivery and spending, they can support the town centre regeneration agenda.