HOME builder and regeneration specialist Strawberry Star Homes, part of the Strawberry Star Group, have unveiled new plans to redevelop the land next to the Harvey Centre that will rejuvenate Harlow town centre. The plans will create new homes and a retail boulevard set amongst beautifully landscaped public spaces. In addition to boosting the local economy and generating new job opportunities, the plan supports the growth of existing town centre businesses.
The new plan, which improves on the previously approved proposals for the site, would deliver additional homes, modernised retail and commercial units and more, significantly enhanced public realm in Harlow’s town centre. Strawberry Star forecast investment worth around £250-300 million across the mixed-use development creating thriving communities where people will aspire to live, work and play.
The plan includes creating approximately 850-900 high-quality studios, 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom homes in buildings across a range of heights up to a possible maximum of 17 storeys; c4,000 sqm of retail and commercial space; and 5,900 sqm of landscaped public realm space. A multi-storey car park on the edge of the town centre would provide residential parking for the development and keep traffic away from the town centre and the Council’s proposed new sustainable bus route through town.
Strawberry Star’s aim is to give Harlow town centre a fresh new look between Market Square, Broad Walk, West Gate and the Harvey Centre with modern and vibrant new design. The proposed new boulevard would link Broad Walk to West Gate while the public realm across the site would benefit from significantly enhanced green landscaping.
Strawberry Star will publish more details on the transformation proposals in the next few weeks as part of a public consultation process. Local residents will be able to provide their valuable feedback, views and suggestions on the future of the town centre. Plans will then be finalised ahead of submitting a Master Planning application to Harlow District Council before the end of the year. Subject to planning approval from the Council, Strawberry Star anticipates pre-construction work to commence in summer 2021.
Santhosh Gowda, Chairman, Strawberry Star, said, “Major regeneration in Harlow is driving local demand for quality housing. We plan to provide well-designed homes whilst delivering a fresh look for the town centre. We endeavour to contribute to Harlow’s local economy and employment generation by way of strengthening the town centre and the local community through a well planned development. We look forward to sharing more information of our plans in the coming weeks and inviting residents to share their feedback and suggestions.
“It is well documented that greater connectivity coupled with a long term view of the development facilitate higher potential for local business growth. We believe that major infrastructure improvements are key to unlocking value on our Harlow project, with many exciting town improvements in pipeline. Harlow town centre will be a great place to live and emerge stronger as a thriving destination that local residents and visitors from further afield will want to come to on a frequent basis.”
Let’s hope they can add character to the town centre, that reflects Essex villages rather than soulless glass and steel or the terrible current buildings that are the functional post war architecture built when materials were scarce.
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