By Sian Bayley, local democracy reporter
Big changes could soon be coming to the streets of Wandsworth as new plans for improvements along Putney High Street and Wandsworth Town Centre have been unveiled by the council.
Putney has already seen a number of improvement works since September 2019 and could see some more changes in the future.
This week the council announced that it had received a further £1.058m in funding from the Government from the Future High Streets initiative to help increase footfall on the high street.
Wandsworth council hopes to split this into three projects which include:
- The Library Community and Incubator Hub – This could see a combined workspace and community hub brought to the high street using the existing library. The plan includes provision of 110sqm of affordable workspace, new meeting rooms and a community café.
- Lower Richmond Road Junction – The council wants to give pedestrians more crossing facilities to help them access the northern end of the high street and the Thames. The plan includes a reduction in the number of signalised pedestrian crossing stages and traffic islands to make the pedestrian crossing simpler and easier to navigate.
- Putney Embankment Extension – The proposal seeks to extend the Putney Embankment towards the high street and enhance the existing waterfront areas access. It could see a new kiosk building on Lower Richmond Road which combines a bus stop, improved access and coffee shop.
The planning document for the future of the Wandle Delta area was also discussed at the council’s planning and transport committee last week (February 4).
The Wandle Delta includes a number of sites north of Wandsworth Town Centre and south of the River Thames.
Historically, it has been home to a lot of retail warehouses and industrial uses, but the redevelopment will look to increase the residential and leisure areas and provide new areas of public open space.
Planning documents say: “The area will be transformed by creating an accessible and permeable network of streets and spaces, making it easy and enjoyable to get around on foot and by bike and supporting the intensification of uses.”
Currently it is home to buildings associated with electricity, the former gas holders, waste and recycling facilities and ongoing access to Thames Tideway infrastructure which make it difficult and confusing to get around.
Developers have recently acquired the vacant former gasworks site plus a neighbouring piece of land in Swandon Way – one of the last remaining undeveloped sites in the town centre – which the council hopes will be redeveloped to provide more homes and jobs for local people.
The two sites cover 1.4 hectares, stretching from the River Wandle in the west up to Swandon Way in the east.
It is expected that more sites will come forward for development in the next few years, so it is important for people to comment on the Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) for the area to help provide guidance on what new developments should look like and offer.
A public consultation on the redevelopment of the Wandle Delta area will soon take place for residents to share their thoughts and concerns, and it is expected to be adopted in the spring/summer this year.
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