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Plans for a new Andover unveiled

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Businesses in Andover heard more about plans to rejuvenate the town centre this morning.

Local businesses and stakeholders were in attendance at the Guildhall to find out from NEW Masterplanning what the latest development plans and timescales were for a projected new image of our town centre.

Organised by Andover BID, the meeting was open to local businesses that may be affected by the proposal.

Members of the NEW Masterplanning team were in attendance along with the Andover BID team and the leader of Test Valley Borough Council (TVBC) Councillor Phil North.

Cllr North has made the rejuventation of our high street areas a priority since his appointment to the top role in May 2017.

At the meeting, it was highlighted that over 3,000 responses had been received to the initial survey – and a further 1,500 on the current consultation survey on the emerging vision for Andover. This survey closes today.

Concept plans were shown to businesses including the rejuvenation of the town centre by opening up the spaces, redevelopment and relocation of key areas of town, and better cross town access, while still maintaining the key heritage sites of St Mary’s Church, The Guildhall and the Town Mill.

The project is still in its consultancy stage with an aim to start redevelopment works in “about five years time”. Having said that, Cllr North gave the council’s commitment to “pull out all the stops” in an effort to get the plans expedited as soon as possible.

It is anticipated that the redevelopment works themselves may take a further five years to complete.

Part of the concept for Andover includes opening up vistas along the River Anton to make it more accessible and a more prominent feature of the town. It is suggested that there may be an alteration of the current Western Avenue ringroad and removal of the current roundabout at the bottom of Vigo Road (Town Park).

Businesses were assured by Cllr North that the council would be “stepping up” to aid any temporary moving of premises required during the redevelopment process.

Cllr North also highlighted that it has been the council’s purchase of the Chantry Centre earlier this year that has enabled the process of redevelopment to be pursued by TVBC.

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Kevin Ridgeon

Kevin Ridgeon

IT/Web support, Digital Guru, Reporter and photographer for Love Andover

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