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Crawley town centre report helps identify key opportunities for development

Key opportunities for development and economic growth within the borough have been identified thanks to a new report.

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As part of the One Public Estate Partnership, Crawley Borough Council, with West Sussex County and Crawley College, commissioned the report to explore routes for development across six town centre sites which are currently under-utilised.

One Public Estate is a national programme that brings public sector organisations together to collectively look at the use of land and buildings with the aim of improving public services, and supporting economic growth.

Crawley is already a significant economic hub, due to its good transport connectivity, proximity to London, Gatwick Airport and the presence of Manor Royal, which is one of the South East’s largest mixed activity business districts.

However, the report identified the following sites as areas with significant potential:

  • Queens Square
  • Station Gateway
  • Telford Place
  • Crawley College
  • County Buildings
  • Town Hall and adjacent car park

Each development site has been examined for their most suitable use, including a small quantity of commercial and business spaces at Station Gateway and Queens Square (of which already has an established concentration of office based activity and retail offerings).

Plans for the redevelopment of the Town Hall, along with Telford Place and Station Gateway have already progressed significantly. Offering more than 90,000 square feet of business and commercial spaces alongside residential properties.

The report identified the County Buildings (adjacent to the Town Hall), as an exciting development site, with potential for commercial spaces designed to offer workspace for a range of different businesses alongside further residential properties.

Cabinet member for Planning and Economic Development at Crawley Borough Council, Councillor Peter Smith, said:

“With three million square feet of office space currently in the pipeline to be developed and more identified, the town centre potential as a place for economic growth across a number of industries is significant and exciting.

“The report has been pivotal in identifying areas of development that can be brought forwards quickly such as Queens Square and Telford Place.”

Leader of West Sussex County Council, Louise Goldsmith, said:

“This is an example of how the Growth Deals signed with every district and borough council in West Sussex and our One Public Estate Programme (OPE) are having a positive impact in helping to achieve economic growth across West Sussex.

“Collaborative working through OPE helps to secure resources and investment to boost the local economy, helping both residents and businesses to prosper and benefit from planned improvements. It puts a real focus on economic growth and development countywide.”

Continuing this, Group Managing Director (Commercial) for the Chichester College Group, Julie Kapsalis, said:

“Crawley College is very pleased to be part of this work. We are absolutely committed to developing the offer at our campus in Crawley to ensure that we can train people in the skills required by the local economy.

“We want to attract more students and learners to access our training and facilities. We welcome the joined up approach between partners and a focus on collaboration to ensure the most effective outcomes for Crawley, its businesses and residents.”

Under the council’s Town Centre Regeneration Programme, development of these opportunity sites alongside improvements to the town’s public realm and transport infrastructure has been detailed on www.regeneratingcrawley.org.uk.

Business

Can you help save Maggy’s from closing?

Since opening its doors back in June ’18 Maggy’s has grown hugely in popularity, but after planning officers refused to allow them to stay they are unable to find anywhere else to move to and may have to close.

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The affordable food store is in a quandary. It’s success has meant that the store should be able to grow and continue to support the local community.

But ever since Maggy’s opened its doors it has encountered problems with the planning officers who say that the store does not meet the category of business it needs to be in the location it is.

This has caused a real problem for the store and ever since this was discovered they have tried to find a solution with Crawley Council about what they are to do.

Now with only weeks left before the deadline when they have to move out they still have been unable to find a suitable venue that is affordable for them.

Now Maggies and owner Ziggy are desperate for help in finding somewhere they can move to but that is also easy for local people to reach.

If somewhere is not found within weeks then the unthinkable will have to happen and Maggy’s could be no more.

If anyone is able to help them Ziggy asks if they can get in touch via their facebook page here.

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