Developer chosen for the regeneration of Chard Town Centre
By jashby1 | Tuesday, February 28, 2012, 15:23
Artist's impression of Mill Square, with shop fronts and seating.
At a well attended drop-in event last October, Chard residents gave their views on detailed design proposals for the former ACI/Boden Mill site from a shortlist of two developers. Those who could not attend gave their comments online or by letter.
The Chard Regeneration Scheme Project Board have now assessed the merits of both proposals and their recommendation to engage Henry Boot Developments Ltd, one of the UK's leading property development companies, was accepted by the district council's Executive Committee in early February.
Project Board Chairman Councillor Jo Roundell Greene said: "We had many things to think about when deciding on this crucial next step.
"We were extremely grateful to receive the wide ranging views on the two proposals and considered them carefully in coming to our decision. We believe that we have chosen the right way forward for Chard, but realise that this is only the beginning and there are still a lot of issues we must work through with local residents and our development partner."
Craig Mathias, who led the successful bid said: " The Henry Boot Developments team worked hard to ensure that our proposals support the vision for the regeneration of Chard town centre.
"We look forward to completing a formal agreement with South Somerset District Council and making a start on this very exciting project"
Their suggested design, known until now as "Proposal B", includes substantial physical redevelopment of the Boden Mill Site to include a 45,000 sq ft foodstore, additional retail units, residential, a Town Square, Undercroft Parking for nearly 300 cars and refurbishment of Boden Mill for a variety of uses including retail, commercial and residential.
The proposal intends to bring much needed investment to Chard and increase footfall in the town centre.
The final design and layout will be agreed through local consultation and the relevant detailed planning application process before redevelopment is anticipated to begin on site in late 2013/early 2014.