STEP CLOSER: Multi-million pound plans to overhaul Stretford high street
Waterside View, Image by Bruntwood Works
Plans for a total revamp of Stretford’s high street have been approved by Trafford council’s executive, after £17m was secured from central government.
At an executive meeting this week, Coun James Wright, executive member for housing, announced an update on the plans.
He said: “Stretford is well overdue investment and regeneration.
“For too long Stretford has been an afterthought for this council. Not any more.
“Under this administration Stretford was earmarked immediately as a priority. We wanted the community to play a full part in shaping Stretford for future generations.
“This plan will kick-start the biggest regeneration of Stretford in generations. It will provide the spark for the reignition of Stretford as a major town and destination in Trafford and more widely across Greater Manchester.
“Stretford is already trendy and one of the six coolest places in the country to invest.
“This is an incredibly exciting, bold and dynamic plan for Stretford, one that every member of this council should be proud to support.”
The funding will support multi-million pound plans to revitalise Stretford and its town centre.
The proposals, from developers Bruntwood Works in partnership with Trafford council, were submitted to the council’s planning department seeking outline permission in March 2021.
The developers had conducted 18 months of public consultation and say they’re determined to put the Stretford community at the heart of the plans, with 71pc of respondents in favour.
The proposals are set to restoring the historic King Street and open up access to the Bridgewater canal to make space for new waterfront bars and restaurants.
Stretford’s historic King Street will be reinstated to provide a new high street for the community, with more new shops, a new public square, a new park and a revamped Stretford Mall.
Lacy Street car park would be repurposed to open up access to the Bridgewater Canal, creating a new waterfront destination with bars and restaurants.
A ‘Makers Yard’ area for small independents and the evening economy, with outdoor seating, restaurants and bars would also be created, with Arndale House renovated to provide modern offices and more space for shops.
The plans also include proposals for up to 800 new homes, with some affordable housing.
Coun Jane Slater, executive member for health and Stretford resident and ward councillor, said: “I really welcome this report, like you say Stretford has been left behind for several generations. I remember when we built the precinct and we built the subways and I don’t think there’s been any real consultation since those days.
“So I’m really pleased that this administration has truly started consultation with our residents. We really welcome what you’re doing for us in Stretford.”
Coun Steve Adshead, executive member for the environment and Stretford ward councillor who also grew up in the area, added: “I remember us building the precinct and back then it did look quite nice and was one of the best in country, but since then there has been no investment in it. There’s been no long-term investment in the centre itself.
“I’m really pleased now that we’ve had some meaningful discussions with residents and it’s been really, really positive across the whole of Stretford. People are very keen to see what’s going on and want to get stuck into it.
“I’ve never seen so much appetite from people wanting to engage with this.”
Coun Adshead added that the process will need to be one of development over several years, rather than a one stop investment that fixes all of the area’s challenges.
Coun Tom Ross, executive member for finance and fellow Stretford ward representative, added: “In my first speech in this chamber I talked about Stretford and how it is the poor relation to all of the other towns in the borough and my experience since 2008 has been proven correct. We weren’t taken seriously.”
Coun Daniel Chaulkin, of Conservative group, said: “Sometimes there are areas that need investment and this is one of them. This is great to see, let’s hope that it does lead to the regeneration of Stretford, it’s much needed.”
Coun Dan Jerrome, leader of the Green group, called for more detail on the carbon budget of the plans.
Coun Andrew Western, council leader, said he completely agreed with Coun Jerrome and said he is pushing for more to be done and more details to be released on the matter.
He added: “It is, as far as I am concerned, the most important development that we are bringing forward as a local authority and we are doing so after years of neglect in Stretford town centre.”
The report was approve unanimously by the executive.
Words: Alice Richardson, Local Democracy Reporter
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