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Gloucestershire Business News

King's Walk regeneration plans earn award nomination

The ambitious plans for the overhaul of the King's Walk, Gloucester Shopping Centre have seen the centre's owners and Gloucester City Council nominated for a prestigious award.

The council's partnership with Reef Group, owners of King's Walk has been shortlisted in the MJ Achievement Awards that recognise excellence in local government.

The scheme is one of the finalists in the Property and Asset Management category after the partners worked together to create an ambitious regeneration plan for the centre to attract high-profile tenants.

The plans complement the wider Kings Quarter scheme, which will see the area transformed with improvements to King's Square, Gloucester Station and construction of the new Transport Hub.

The overhaul of the shopping centre at a cost of around £7 million will see a total revamp of King's Walk and Clarence Walk, the construction of a modern glass atrium and new contemporary looking entrances.

The work is in addition to the £5 million scheme for King's Square due to start in the Autumn of this year.

Leader of Gloucester City Council, Councillor Paul James, said: "I am delighted that the bold approach we have taken to bring about the regeneration of the Kings Walk has been recognised.

"The nature of town and city centres is changing and local councils need to show leadership in helping to manage that change.

"That's what our partnership with Reef for Kings Walk is all about. Kings Walk is a key part of our plans to make the city a more vibrant and attractive place for people to work, live and visit.

"We will be on site with improvement works very shortly and people will then be able to start to see the benefits of this arrangement."

The regeneration plans will also see former BHS store on Eastgate Street refurbished to enable it to be occupied by a major retailer.

King's Walk Shopping Centre's roof top car park will also be given a facelift and improvements to the elevations facing Eastgate Street will take place.

New public toilets are also featured incorporating a Changing Places facility for people who have physical disabilities and who need more space and equipment to be able to use toilets safely and comfortably.

The partnership between the Council and Reef Group not only enables the regeneration of Kings Walk but also allows the Council to benefit from growth in the rental income to support the services it provides.

Future phases of the regeneration plans will also bring in new uses to King's Walk to reduce its reliance on retail and add vitality to the area.

The MJ nomination follows a number of other accolades for the city's regeneration projects with the Council currently listed as finalists for the new bus station in the South West region of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors awards (RICS Awards) under two categories: Regeneration and Infrastructure.

And the Transport Hub's architects, BDP have been nominated for an Architect of the Year award for their design.

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