Portsmouth council has announced it has put forward the planning application for the regeneration of the City Centre North. As part of the proposal, the area between Hope Street to the north, Charlotte Street to the south and Commercial Road to the east will benefit from an incredible transformation.

Included in the application are the former Tricorn and Sainsbury’s sites, which the council bought to unlock the opportunity for significant, long-term regeneration in this part of Portsmouth. If successful, the development will bring new homes, a large public green space alongside space for new community facilities, retail, hospitality and leisure uses, as well as new walking and cycling routes south from Charles Dickens and Buckland.

“This outline planning application marks an exciting milestone in the revitalisation of the city centre and developing this area is a vital piece of the puzzle when it comes to breathing new life into the whole city centre. This is a long-term project so the flexibility of this planning application means we can adapt the plans over time to reflect the city’s changing needs, new ideas and technologies and support improvements to other parts of the city centre including Commercial Road and Guildhall Square that will come forward first,” said Councillor Steve Pitt Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Economic Development.

Designed to bring a modern flair to the area and to support the council’s wider regeneration plans for the whole city and sustainability targets, the development should take around 15 years to complete. Subject to planning permission, the initial application aims to set the standard for future development and, if given the green light, work on it could begin in 2024.

The council has decided to involve the people of Portsmouth in its regeneration plans as well, and, over the coming months, residents will be invited to share theirs ideas for the city centre, including future uses of the new open space that will provide new facilities and green walkable link serving existing communities, while also supporting new city centre residents and becoming an attraction for visitors. As the project progresses the community will also be invited to help shape the look and character of new buildings within City Centre North.

Moreover, the council is also planning improvements to the roads around the proposed development, to create easier walking, cycling and bus routes in the city centre and support better transport connections across the region. These improvements will complement plans already in place as part of the South East Hampshire Rapid Transit projects. The council has submitted plans for a new two-way bus lane along Unicorn Road and Cascades Approach, along with safer crossing points for people walking and cycling, and a new shared cycle and footpath on Unicorn Road.

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