August 2 2014 Latest news:
Monday, July 7, 2014
An innovative redevelopment scheme by Havering Council has been recognised as the best in the south of England.
The overhaul of Hornchurch town centre was completed last year and has now been voted the second best project in the country after being shortlisted for the 2014 Urban Transport Design Award.
The scheme was funded by Transport for London (TfL) and aimed to make the shopping environment more appealing to visitors, while encouraging businesses to grow in the area by regenerating the High Street.
Although it lost out nationally, to Poynton in Cheshire, it was highly commended, beating off comeptition from Wimbledon and Southend to claim bragging rights for the south.
Cllr Robert Benham, cabinet member for environment, said: “I am delighted that this scheme has been recognised as highly commended. We have done a great job in transforming the outdated High Street into a vibrant and modern town centre. It’s a great example for other towns to follow.
“Although there were some concerns in the beginning, I think everyone can see the benefits of the scheme now. This award proves how successful the transformation has been and puts Hornchurch on the map.”
A modern shopping area with better crossing points, new street furniture and wider pavements were all features of the revamp.
Pavements were designed to assist people with sight problems, meaning street furniture is now placed on different coloured and textured pavement.
The town also now boasts Hornchurch now boasts better cycle lanes, extra bike parking, wider and smoother roads and pavements, improved traffic flow and better waiting areas for buses and bus users.
This Saturday the town centre will come to life with the Hornchurch in Harmony event, featuring jazz, classical and pop music from 12-3pm.