Consultation on redevelopment of Silver Hill

Public consultation on the proposals for the re-development of the Silver Hill area of Winchester, also known as Broadway-Friarsgate, will start next month with a 3-day exhibition and will include newsletters, workshops, meetings with both local people and local interest groups, all of which will be complemented by a project website.

Younger people and other groups within the community, who often do not get involved in the planning process, are also being targeted in an extensive exercise to gather people's views before a planning application for the area is submitted towards the end of the year.

These include holding a dedicated focus group for younger people, encouraging local schools and colleges to undertake projects on the Silver Hill redevelopment and appointing an artist to undertake a 'community snapshot' to see the site through the eyes of existing and potential users.

Consultation will begin formally with a series of public exhibitions on the detailed design for Silver Hill as follows:

Thursday, 23 June 2005
Winchester Guildhall 2pm - 8pm
Friday, 24 June 2005
Winchester Guildhall 10am - 5pm
Saturday, 25 June 2005
Middle Brook Street Car Park 10.30am - 4pm

Initial designs for the proposed buildings on the site including elevations, views, plans and models of the development will be available at the exhibition.

Michael Capocci, managing director of Thornfield Properties said: "There is a general consensus that this site is currently a blemish on this important historic city. We very much hope that a wide cross section of people will come along to the public exhibition to see the further evolution of the draft proposals and discuss their thoughts and ideas for the redevelopment of the area with members of the project team.

By the end of the consultation process we hope to have finalised plans to create a vibrant new development that will revitalise and enhance this important part of the city."

The project website, which is due to go live in the next couple of weeks, will have additional information on the public consultation, including a virtual exhibition from 23 June 2005, and will be updated on a regular basis to feedback the results of the consultation and how local views and ideas have influenced the design of the area -

The development site includes the bus station, Wool Staplers warehouse, the medical buildings on Friarsgate and Tanner Street, Kings Walk, The Post Office, Friarsgate multi storey car park and properties fronting Silver Hill, including the Sainsburys supermarket.

Extensive public consultation was undertaken about the future of the Silver Hill area by the City Council during the process of preparing a planning brief for the site and Thornfield has consulted widely since its appointment as the Council's development partner.

Although the principle of redevelopment and the mix of uses on the site has been largely fixed through the Council's adopted planning brief and the development agreement with Thornfield, detailed designs for the scheme will still be subject to extensive consultation through the planning process.

Councillor Sheila Campbell, leader of Winchester City Council said: "Both Thornfield and the Council are committed to ensuring that the local community has a real opportunity to influence the detailed designs for this development. We very much hope that everyone will take an active involvement so that this becomes an area of the City that we can all be proud of."

A planning application is likely to be submitted during the autumn once the extensive public consultation has been concluded.

Subject to planning permission being granted, work could start on site early in 2007.