Draft plans for improving the look and feel of Sunderland’s High Street West can be seen this week.
They follow a consultation exercise in February where the public and businesses gave their thoughts to the city council.
A three-week consultation window, giving residents and businesses the chance to have their say on the draft plans, runs from today to Monday, June 15.
Coun Mel Speding, the city council’s cabinet secretary, said: “We recognise the need to improve the way Sunderland city centre looks and feels, to help make it more inviting, and to add vibrancy.
“We have been re-modelling a major part of the city centre, and these proposals are part of that exercise.
“We all want to attract more customer spending and private sector investment.
Delivering upgrades to the look and feel of High Street West is important, and so is what people tell us.Coun Mel Speding, Sunderland city council
“High Street West is a main route within the city centre, which links existing shopping and leisure facilities as well as the university campus. It is an important area for future investment and improvement.
“Delivering upgrades to the look and feel of High Street West is important, and so is what people tell us.”
A budget of £3.5m funding has been allocated to deliver two phases of works to High Street West.
• Phase 1 will focus on Bridge Street and High Street West up to Keel Square.
• Phase 2 will continue the works from the square past the Empire Theatre and to the junction with St. Michael’s Way.
The draft proposals look to create a more welcoming pedestrian environment - including new paving, planting, signage, street furniture and feature lighting.
The proposals also introduce measures to improve traffic management around Bridge Street and Fawcett Street, including the changing of waiting restrictions.
Consultation outcomes will help the project team develop a final detailed scheme for Phase 1.
The procurement of a contractor to deliver the works will start in the summer.
Phase 1 Works are programmed to start in early 2016, with completion in autumn 2016.
A plan of the draft scheme for High Street West Phase 1 can be viewed HERE from today.
The public can submit their comments on the draft until June 15:
• Online via www.sunderland.gov.uk/high-street-west
• By email : firstname.lastname@example.org;
• By completing a comment form at the exhibition on the ground floor of City Library and Arts Centre, Fawcett Street, SR1 1RE, or taking one away and return it by freepost.
Council officers will be available to discuss the plans, and the public can submit comments at an exhibition at Sunderland Software Centre, Tavistock Place, SR1 1PB, on Thursday, June 4, from 2pm to 7pm, and Tuesday, June 9, from 9am to noon.