Following a Cabinet meeting held this week to review plans to revitalise the city centre, Winchester City Council will now progress to the next stage of the project which will see a vibrant mixed-use development for the area, with high quality new homes, flexible workspaces, a thriving night-time economy and beautiful public spaces.

The Strategic Outline Case (SOC) has now been approved which is the first stage in the formal process of business case development. The document set out the aims, provided an option appraisal for delivery options and then set out the preferred way forward for the proposed development site (the Defined Site), which is located within the Central Winchester Regeneration Supplementary Planning Document area. Subject to further review in the next stages, proposals for this phase of development incorporate the site of Winchester Bus Station, Kings Walk, the old Friarsgate Medical Centre and Coitbury House.

An Outline Business Case will now be prepared for consideration in the Autumn and that will look in more detail into the delivery route and financial viability.

Proposals to bring forward exciting short term improvements to the ground floor and public areas surrounding Kings Walk, exploring the inclusion of event space, new outdoor spaces for eating and improved seating were also agreed.

Cllr Kelsie Learney, Cabinet Member for Housing and Asset Management said:

“The next stage for this project is a significant one. We are taking careful steps to make sure we make the right decisions and have taken time to speak to residents, businesses and stakeholders. We now have a really clear and positive way forward to deliver the very best for the city, for our residents and visitors. We are looking forward to getting started on improving Kings Walk too – things are going to be happening on site soon and this long neglected area of town will take its first steps towards transformation”.