Bus and taxi access plan considered to boost visits to Scunthorpe town centre
PLANS to create a route to drop-off shoppers nearer Scunthorpe High Street and build a canopy at the Foundry have been discussed by council bosses.
North Lincolnshire Council officials and councillors met with community figures to discuss what can be done to bring about improvements to the town centre.
They are also looking at building a canopy in the Foundry to create an indoor shopping feel.
The walk around town came as the High Street comes under threat from the internet, supermarkets and the proposed out-of-town development on Doncaster Road.
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Making the High Street more accessible by public transport was discussed – allowing buses and taxis to cross the High Street at its junction with Wells Street.
Councillor Liz Redfern, the leader of the council, said this would bring shoppers closer to the High Street.
She said: "We would like to open up the top of the Foundry shopping centre for vehicular access.
"This would enable shoppers to be dropped off before they reach Scunthorpe bus station, near Mary Street."
Mrs Redfern said she thought developing the town centre was important.
She said: "Scunthorpe town centre provides employment to many local people and we need to develop and regenerate the town centre for the good of North Lincolnshire.
"As leader of the council, I take very seriously my responsibility to improve Scunthorpe and the whole of North Lincolnshire.
"On a regular basis, I plan to get out into town centres ad speak to shoppers and businesses to see how we can improve the area with a fresh pair of eyes.
"The Scunthorpe Telegraph campaign for free parking has clearly made a massive difference to the town.
"And we are looking to provide extra money in the forthcoming budget to support the massive regeneration of Scunthorpe town centre."
Creating the access route was one of five main issues councillors said they would look to address to improve the town centre's appeal to shoppers.
The others were:
Lighting: Councillors made the point the lighting in the town centre was too dark.
They cited the lights either not working or not being bright enough when in operation.
Concerns were raised over the potential negative impact this could have on the night-time economy.
Trees: The trees near the Foundry shopping centre were highlighted as blocking CCTV cameras and the purpose the trees served was also raised.
Buildings: High Street retailers said improving the area surrounding the Foundry Arms building should be a priority. Talks are still ongoing on the rebuilding of the pub.
Owners were told by councillors in 2011 to close the premises amid fears the adjoining multi-storey car park might collapse.
Other areas that will also be looked into include the street furniture in the town centre.
Mrs Redfern added the area around Ravendale Street should be kept vehicle free to allow for the "cafe culture" this area of the town promotes.
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