Town centre project set to be extended



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WORK to extend improvements to Bognor Regis town centre should start this autumn.

The second phase of the £1.65m enhancement of the retailing area is scheduled to begin on the square in front of the railway station.

It will move on to Station Road and the north London Road junction in spring 2015 as well as the public area outside Morrisons and along York Road.

The scheme is set to be completed in the Place St Maur in the winter of 2015/16. The High Street is due to be improved then as well alongside works by the county council on traffic flows and to provide real-time information to bus stops.

Backing for the timetable was given by Arun District Council’s cabinet on Monday.

Caroline Gosford, the council’s senior regeneration officer, said the masterplan for the improvements agreed between district, town and county councils was intended to provide a strong link between the railway station and the seafront.

“The masterplan proposed the use of a high quality and co-ordinated palette of materials, furniture and planting,” she said.

This would consist of monolith signs together with lighting columns, paving materials, trees and street furniture. Work began in February on the £250,000 first phase along the London Road precinct.

Arun cabinet member Cllr Paul Dendle said: “It’s fantastic this extra money has come in. The precinct is looking really, really good.”

He criticised Arun member Francis Oppler and county councillor Tony Sutcliffe for their attacks on the works on a project he said could only benefit the town.

Arun’s leader, Cllr Gillian Brown, said: “This is really good news of Bognor. Those people who tried to stop and criticise the scheme need to remember this is a regeneration partnership with the county and district councils. It is a scheme we should really be proud of.”

Cllr Ricky Bower, a cabinet member, said: “The regeneration of Bognor has been a priority for this council for so, so many years and it’s good to see something being achieved.”

The extra funding was won by Arun from the government’s coastal communities fund.