Harrogate business owners to get glimpse of town centre's future in revised Gateway plans

The possible future shape of Harrogate town centre is to be revealed - with public feedback taken into account on key parts of  the multi-million plans to  boost sustainable transport.
Part of the revised design for the Gateway project on Station Parade in Harrogate.Part of the revised design for the Gateway project on Station Parade in Harrogate.
Part of the revised design for the Gateway project on Station Parade in Harrogate.

After a mixed reaction to several of the most radical options in the £10.9 m Gateway project supported by cash from the Government’s Transforming Cities Fund, the project’s champions say they have listened to concerns from parts of the business world and the wider community.

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The public will get the chance to see the revised version of the plans for transforming the Station Parade areas of Harrogate in the next phase of public consultation which begins next Monday online.

North Yorkshire County Coun Don Mackenzie, executive member for transport and access, said: “We listened to the feedback from the consultations earlier this year and have taken that into account in the further development of the designs.

“We are keen for residents to tell us how well the revised designs meet the objectives of opening up the town’s gateway to facilitate and encourage cycling and walking and improve the quality of the location.

“People can help to define the final look of the scheme by giving their views on details such as benches and planting.”

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While previous public surveys have shown general support for the idea of boosting public transport, encouraging sustainable travel and upgrading the public realm for residents and visitors in Harrogate town centre, when it comes to the practicalities splits have emerged in the town.

With that in mind, Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce’s next meeting on November 8 at the Cedar Court Hotel will see members of the Gateway team attend to give a presentation and answer questions with business people face to face.

David Simister, Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce's chief executive, said: “We are particularly pleased that the Harrogate Station Gateway Project team will attending our November meeting, as it will be an opportunity for business owners to examine the revised plans, listen to the presentation, and then put any questions they may have about the £10.9m scheme.

“With the Covid pandemic forcing last March’s consultation to be held via online presentations, I hope this event will be well attended, in particular by those businesses that will be directly affected by the proposed changes.”

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While the Chamber of Commerce meeting is open to non-members, who must pre-register, organisers are keen to emphasise it is a business meeting.

The online events for the general public will take place on the following dates:

Thursday, October 21, 6pm to 7pm, for the Harrogate scheme

Thursday, October 28, 6pm to 7pm, for the Harrogate scheme

For the detailed information about the plans, how to join the online events and to complete the survey for your town go to go to www.yourvoice.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/northyorkshire from Monday, October 18.

The consultation will run until Friday, November 12, 2021.

Coun Phil Ireland, Harrogate Borough Council’s cabinet member for carbon reduction and sustainability, welcomed the latest progress on Gateway but called on the public to make their feelings known.

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Coun Ireland said: “We want to ensure the project provides an exciting and attractive gateway to Harrogate town centre.

“Listening to residents’ feedback provides valuable insight into achieving these aims. Now is the time focus our attention on the finer details of the scheme, I’d urge everyone to get involved.”

The Harrogate Gateway project is just one part of Government-backed plans for North Yorkshire which also involve Skipton and Selby set to be delivered by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, North Yorkshire County Council, Craven District Council, Harrogate Borough Council and Selby District Council.