Gloucester City Council Finalist in Prestigious Awards
Gloucester City Council has been named as a finalist in the prestigious MJ Achievement Awards that recognise excellence in local government.
The city council is a finalist in the Innovation in Property and Asset Management category for its partnership with Reef Group, as owners of the Kings Walk Shopping Centre.
The partners have worked together to create ambitious regeneration plans for the centre and to attract new high profile tenants.
The plans complement the wider Kings Quarter scheme, which will see the transformation of that area of the city with the improvements to Kings Square and the railway station following on from the construction of the new bus station.
The overhaul of the shopping centre at a cost of around £7 million will see a total revamp of Kings Walk and Clarence Walk, the construction of a modern glass atrium and new contemporary looking entrances. The work is in addition to the £5 million scheme for Kings Square due to start in the Autumn of this year.
The former BHS store on Eastgate Street will be refurbished to enable it to be occupied by a major retailer.
Kings Walk Shopping Centre’s roof top car park will also be given a facelift and improvements to the elevations facing Eastgate Street will take place.
New public toilets are also featured incorporating a Changing Places facility for people who have physical disabilities and who need more space and equipment to be able to use toilets safely and comfortably.
The partnership between the Council and Reef Group not only enables the regeneration of Kings Walk but also allows the Council to benefit from growth in the rental income to support the services it provides. Future phases of the regeneration plans will also bring in new uses to Kings Walk to reduce its reliance on retail and add vitality to the area.
The MJ nomination follows a number of other accolades for the city’s regeneration projects with the Council currently listed as finalists for the new bus station in the South West region of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors awards (RICS Awards) under two categories: Regeneration and Infrastructure.
And the transport hub’s architects, BDP have been nominated for an Architect of the Year award for their design.
Leader of Gloucester City Council, Councillor Paul James, said: “I am delighted that the bold approach we have taken to bring about the regeneration of the Kings Walk has been recognised. The nature of town and city centres is changing and local councils need to show leadership in helping to manage that change. That’s what our partnership with Reef for Kings Walk is all about. Kings Walk is a key part of our plans to make the city a more vibrant and attractive place for people to work, live and visit. We will be on site with improvement works very shortly and people will then be able to start to see the benefits of this arrangement.”