Work to transform Elland town centre, making it more attractive and improving amenities for people who live, work or visit the town, is moving forward, with planning applications for some of the improvements due to be submitted this autumn.
Over £6million of funding from the Future High Streets Fund is set to transform the centre of Elland, including improvements to public spaces and natural features. This significant investment will help to create a thriving market town which is vibrant, safe and a great place to spend time.
The changes are focused around four distinct areas of the town, these are:
• Market Square – Over £1million will be spent on improving the area which hosts the market and recognising its long history, with the town first hosting a market in the 12th Century.
• Heart of the high street – In response to public feedback, improved signage, lighting and street environment improvements will make the area more attractive and feel safer. The area’s historic character will also be enhanced and traffic reduced.
• Southgate – Pedestrianisation of the road will make the area more appealing. Improvements to Southgate Square and the repurposing of Coronation Street car park will create a vibrant, exciting event space and a green area, benefitting visitors and nearby residents.
• The Cartwheel Club – The club will be completely refurbished to create a hub for services such as a youth centre, providing a community function.
The aim is to make Elland a more attractive place to visit and do business. These changes will mean more people spend time in Elland. By reducing the car dominance along the high street and redistributing traffic it will create a focal point in the town where people can socialise, shop, sit or enjoy events and families can enjoy green space in which to relax or play.
The plans are based on feedback from residents and businesses collected over a number of years. Significant work has taken place to ensure the plans will create a thriving town with an improved layout and feel. They also look to protect and enhance the many heritage elements of the town, in line with its status as a conservation area.
The plans factor in the benefits which will be felt from the creation of brand-new rail station for Elland and improved options for walking, cycling and catching the bus, for greener, faster and easier ways to get around.
They also acknowledge that sufficient car parking is also required for those unable to use sustainable transport modes. Improvements will be made to both the Market Square and Box Hall Road car parks, with the latter benefitting from an improved and well-lit walkway to Coronation Street along the side of the Rex Cinema. Improved signage will also be installed to better direct people to the car parking facilities around the town.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Town, Engagement and Public Health, Councillor Sarah Courtney, said: “Elland has a rich history, with culture and character and we want to make the most of the many distinctive features of this well-established market town.”
“I’m excited about the vision for the town, with once-in-a-lifetime investment opportunities creating welcoming spaces and improving the look and feel of the town.”
“Careful consideration has been given to the plans, which have been shaped by feedback from local people. We’re confident they will have a really positive impact on the town, making the most of its existing assets to make it a more attractive destination for shoppers, visitors and residents alike.”
The next steps for the project include the submission of planning applications for the introduction of green space on Coronation Street, including landscaping and seating facilities and for an extension to the Cartwheel Club. These are due to be submitted in the next few months and once live will be published on the Council’s planning portal, where people can comment on the detailed plans.