East Cowes Regeneration, a collection of local organisations working together to rejuvenate the town, held a public consultation event last month attended by over 600 people. During and after the event hundreds of Island residents and visitors had their say on redevelopment plans through a questionnaire.
Results showed that:
• 92% of people agreed with the general principle of the regeneration of East Cowes
• 90% agreed with separating ferry traffic from that of the town centre and floating bridge
• 89% of people liked the proposals for a single marshalling yard for Red Funnel
• 74% of people liked the proposals for the location and design of the new terminal building, while 13% didn’t and 12% didn’t know
• The majority of people (67%) preferred the illustration of a ‘mixed use waterfront development’ featuring bars, restaurants, apartments and offices compared to the ‘marine employment led development’ featuring large warehouses and some housing (14%). 19% had no preference.
• Key concerns regarding the redevelopment included parking and traffic management.
Peter Frankum, head of master planning at Savills Urban Design, led the consultation event and said:
“This kind of information is absolutely vital in helping us fine-tune our plans. It’s important for us to know what local people would like to see from the redevelopment. Over the coming weeks we will be taking their feedback into consideration and incorporating it into our designs. Obviously parking and traffic is a key concern and we are now working on plans that will hopefully address these, and as many other issues, as possible.”
Red Funnel CEO, Kevin George, added:
“It’s encouraging to see that the vast majority of people agree with our logic that ferry traffic should be separated from that of the town centre and floating bridge. Similarly they agree with the idea of a single marshalling yard. Both of these principles will help greatly in alleviating traffic, as well as improving safety for pedestrians.
“It was interesting to see restaurants/cafes and shops came at the top of the list for what people would like to see in our existing marshalling yard when we move out. Such waterfront leisure features would help to establish East Cowes as a destination and hopefully attract more visitors and tourists, further boosting the economy and supporting Red Funnel’s terminal move.”
Millions of pounds are set to be invested into East Cowes under the East Cowes Regeneration Project, creating a new waterfront and business opportunities, improving road systems and relocating the Red Funnel ferry terminal to an adjacent site that can cater for more vehicles to park whilst awaiting their ferry crossing. A significant amount of money would also be spent on a new floating bridge connecting Cowes and East Cowes.
To find out more visit www.eastcowesregeneration.co.uk.