Renfrewshire Council has set aside a £10m budget for a wide-ranging programme of improvements to the town centre – aimed at driving new footfall and life to the town centre and creating a more attractive place for residents and visitors to spend time.
Two open consultation events are taking place next week at which you can have your say on how you would like the spaces to be used and what could be done with them.
The events will be in the Paisley.is office at 5a High Street, Paisley, on Thursday 14 March (1 to 7pm) and Saturday 16 March (9.30am to 12.30pm) with council staff on hand to take your comments.
The work is part of a wider programme aimed at using Paisley’s unique cultural and heritage story to change its future – including major transformations of the museum and town hall and a new library in a formerly-empty High St retail unit.
The programme aims to do the following:
• unlock the huge potential of the area around the iconic landmarks of the Abbey and town hall by creating an expanded space for the area’s already successful major events, and for people to gather and spend time;
• work to redesign County Square as a lively transport interchange and distinctively Paisley gateway to the town, as well as a space where a café culture could thrive;
Views are also being sought on work to simplify traffic movements and improve road safety at the following key town centre road junctions:
• Canal St / Causeyside St / Gordon St
• Mill St / Gauze St / Incle St / Glasgow Rd
• Lonend / Gordon St / Mill St
• the one-way system around Wallneuk
That work will aim to make the road network easier to navigate for drivers and pedestrians, remove the perception of the ring road as a barrier, and create more attractive public spaces offering a sense of arrival to the town.
It will also will feed into the results of a feasibility study into longer-term and more significant improvements to the town’s road system.
Renfrewshire Council leader Iain Nicolson said: “We want to bring new life to Paisley’s day and night-time economies by making the town centre easier to reach and get around, and by creating spaces in which residents, workers, students and visitors will want to spend time and money.
“But to make the most of that it is crucial we capture the views of the people who know and use these spaces best….you. The public events will allow everyone with an interest in Paisley’s ongoing revival to have the chance to help shape what happens next, and your feedback will be important.
“The investment in outdoor spaces and road junctions supports a much wider investment in our key venues aimed at driving new visitors to the town and creating new trade for local businesses.
“It’s important to remember the role of town centres everywhere has changed forever. We can’t turn the clock back but we can use what sets us apart – in our case, stunning buildings and a unique cultural and heritage story – to give people new reasons to come here.
“We also want to stress that Paisley will remain open for business while the work is happening – and we want to know how best we can work with you to keep the town moving during construction.
“This investment will help the town make the best of what it has to offer – I hope as many people as possible come to the events and help shape what happens next.”
Council staff have already met with property owners, local business groups and taxi and public transport bosses to get input on the plans, with plenty positive feedback to date.
Construction work is likely to start in 2020, meaning the new outdoor spaces and road junctions will be complete for the increase in visitors and activity expected when the town hall and museum reopen in 2021 and 2022.
Information on the work will be posted online at renfewshire.gov.uk after the public events allowing further feedback to be offered for a limited time.