Stevenage Borough Council has appointed the developer Mace to undertake the first phase of an exciting and ambitious programme of town centre regeneration, with construction expected to start next year.
Mace was selected as the successful partner following a tendering process that saw three other national developers competing for the work, showing real confidence in the future of Stevenage. The scheme brings around £350million of private investment into the town and the planned development is for the western side of the town centre – where the council offices, the Plaza, bus station and several surface car parks are currently located.
Mace’s scheme, which celebrates the heritage of the New Town while bringing it into the 21st century, includes new shops, homes, and a bespoke central venue for a library, exhibition space, health services and council offices. It will also create a new linear park, and food and drink space with bars and restaurants in the heart of the town for people to enjoy.
Cllr Sharon Taylor, Leader of Stevenage Borough Council, said: “This appointment makes large-scale regeneration of our town centre a reality. Mace’s scheme will complement the development already underway – most notably in Park Place – providing new spaces, facilities and homes in the centre of Stevenage and a boost to our local economy with the potential for hundreds of new jobs and training opportunities for local people. The commitment of the council, our partners, local businesses and the property sector specialists that have helped us reach this milestone all demonstrate Stevenage’s significance as a local and regional centre.”
Cllr David Williams, Leader of Hertfordshire County Council, said: “I am very supportive of Mace’s imaginative and impressive scheme. The involvement of some of the planning and property world’s leading players in drawing up the plans gives me confidence that they will be truly transformative. I also welcome the experience and strong track record that Mace will bring to this important regeneration initiative. What’s good for Stevenage is good for Hertfordshire.”
David Grover, COO of Development at Mace, said: “We are delighted to have been chosen as the development partner for this exciting landmark opportunity to transform Stevenage town centre, and deliver new homes, shops, jobs and other fantastic benefits for the town and its residents. We are looking forward to working closely with the council, local businesses and the wider community to develop our joint vision and will bring forward proposals for consultation in 2018.”
Andrew Percival, Chair of Stevenage First, a consortium which oversaw the development of Stevenage Central Framework, the 20 year programme to regenerate Stevenage Town Centre, said: “Today’s exciting announcement is the result of more than two years of work by the Stevenage First partnership to develop a robust framework for the future of the town centre. Mace are proposing an exciting and carefully considered scheme that will give Stevenage a modern, vibrant central area where people can live, work and play. The proposed investment by Mace demonstrates their significant confidence in the future of the town, reimagining the New Town concept whilst maintaining clear links to Stevenage’s unique heritage.”