Call for residents' ideas on £1.4 million Redhill Memorial Park project (From Redhill And Reigate Life)
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Call for residents' ideas on £1.4 million Redhill Memorial Park project
11:05am Wednesday 13th February 2013 in News
Borough planners are calling for residents' ideas for the new play area and sports zone in Memorial Park, Redhill.
The call has come from Reigate and Banstead Borough Council as part of the £1.4 million project to improve the park.
A selection of play area designs and examples of possible sports zone facilities were due to go on show this week in Redhill's Harlequin Theatre.
The display is due to run there until Tuesday, February 26.
The borough council announced the go-ahead for the £1.4 million improvement project at Memorial Park last November.
The plans include a new cafe pavilion with toilets, moving the children’s play area to a more central location, next to the new café, and improving and expanding it, and creating a ‘sports zone’ by updating the existing sports facilities and introducing new activities. The park's facelift is part of the council's raft of plans and schemes for the regeneration of the town. Natalie Bramhall, borough council executive member for property and regeneration, said at the time of the project announcement that they hope to be able to move forward with the plans “relatively quickly,” with a completion date of summer 2014. Coun Bramhall said: “Over the next few years, the regeneration of Redhill will lead to a number of changes in the town centre. “Memorial Park is an important green space in the town, but is under-used and is in need of updating.” She said: “We want to create a popular and contemporary urban park that offers the type of facilities that residents and people who work and shop in Redhill want. “With the majority of funding already in place, we hope to be able start the project relatively quickly.”
Speaking last week, Coun Bramhall said: “Plans for the sports zone include renovating the tennis courts and Multi-use Games Area (MUGA) and introducing new activities for young people such as a new skate park, climbing wall and outdoor exercise equipment.”
Referring residents to the public display at the Harlequin, Adam De Save, borough council executive member for leisure, said: “Please come along and see the plans and tell us what you would like to see to help shape the new look of your park. “Your feedback will be valuable in helping us to develop the detailed designs later in the spring.”
For those unable to visit the exhibition, the designs can be viewed online at www.reigate-banstead.gov.uk/memorialpark where people can give their views. Alternatively, residents can pick up a leaflet and short questionnaire from the display venue or call the council's Customer Services on 01737 276000. The closing date for comments is Thursday, February 28.
Detailed designs will be drawn up in late spring, with works expected to start on site in the autumn, for completion in summer 2014.
The Memorial Park improvement project is being funded from a variety of sources , including through section 106 contributions from the Nobel House redevelopment and other Redhill developments, with additional grant funding and sponsorship where possible. The make-over plans also include improving the cycle route through the park, widening and improving paths to improve accessibility, opening up the main entrance to the park at the corner of Princes Way and London Road, and improving boundaries to improve access and links to the town centre. In addition, the scheme will also focus on “reinvigorating” the sensory garden and introducing more contemporary, lower-maintenance planting schemes which create greater biodiversity. These could be areas of meadow, such as can be found in Priory Park in Reigate. The council has said the improvements will also aim to reduce the fear of crime by improving lighting, widening paths and reducing shrubbery to provide clearer sight-lines. To reduce the environmental impact of the project, the council said sustainable construction techniques and materials will be used where they can be. The main area of Memorial Park was bought with funds raised to commemorate those who fought in the First World War, with the smaller additional sections held in charitable trust. The latest plans are an updated version of the 2010 proposals and reflect the results of hydraulic modelling that showed there is no longer a need for the design of the park to incorporate flood storage for the town centre, as it can be incorporated elsewhere as part of other redevelopment proposals. The council said this means the scheme can be simplified and delivered on site more quickly than was previously thought.