Led by Mayor James Palmer, a team of officers from the Combined Authority visited St Neots to discuss the latest steps towards delivery of the town’s Masterplan.
The Combined Authority is the strategic partner and key funder for the St Neots Masterplan. It has committed £4.1 million to the project which is a partnership between the Combined Authority, the town, district, and county councils, the business community, and other key organisations in St Neots.
The Masterplans for market towns across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough are priority projects in the Combined Authority’s 2019/20 business plan, helping these unique and historic communities develop their potential and flourish far into the future.
At the meeting of the St Neots’ Masterplan Steering Group - which includes community partners, specialists, and local organisations - the Combined Authority team heard how plans for the new cycle bridge and riverside pathways, Smart technology, high speed broadband, and transport improvements are shaping up.
The Masterplan funding for the first phase, approved by the Combined Authority board last summer, is about creating a more vibrant town centre for residents and visitors. The new pedestrian and cycle bridge over the river will help join up the town and increase accessibility. The location and design of the bridge, linking Regatta Park to Priory Lane, were chosen after public consultation. Construction is due to commence in May 2020.
In the summer, St Neots welcomed a further boost when it learned it had been selected as one of 50 towns that will benefit from the £1 billion Future High Streets Fund.
Alongside the Combined Authority’s £4.1 million commitment, an additional £1.7 million has been secured from partner Councils, making a total investment of £5.8 million to support the future success of the town, funds that will be swelled by cash from the Future High Streets Fund.
With its road and rail links, the forthcoming A428 dualling, its plum location in the corridor of East-West Rail, and the CAM Metro route planned to embrace the town, St Neots has massive potential.
The Market Towns Masterplan programme has been developed by the Board of the Combined Authority to ensure key market towns connect in an overall plan that supports their unique quality and helps them grow and share the region’s future prosperity. The Masterplans are about making sure the market towns grow in a way appropriate to those who live there.