Members approved funding for the next phase of Croydon’s Growth Zone programme, totalling £166m at their meeting last night (Monday).
The Growth Zone programme is made up of 46 projects totalling an estimated £520m, which will support the regeneration of the town centre through essential improvements to transport and public spaces for the benefit of residents, businesses and visitors.
The programme has been approved as major projects within the town centre, including the redevelopment of the Whitgift Centre, continue to progress well.
Transport plans include committing £20m to Transport for London (TfL)’s Fiveways project; a new and improved West Croydon Station; greater tram network capacity; significant funding for additional bus services and a comprehensive programme of bus priority measures to support access to and from Croydon town centre.
There will also be improvements to streets including North End, Poplar Walk, George Street and the Park Lane gyratory. High-quality streetscaping will be delivered as part of the Katharine Street, Park Street and Mint Walk projects to rejuvenate Croydon’s civic centre, creating a new setting for the Town Hall.
Growth Zone funding for cultural projects will include a lighting plan incorporating a series of temporary and permanent lighting installations and pieces, in a programme called Croydon-Lit, which will benefit the borough’s night-time economy. It will also include work to develop the Croydon Music City plan.
The council will contribute a total of £309.9m to Growth Zone projects, funded by borrowing from the Public Works Loan Board and will be paid back by business rates.
The remaining £210m will be sourced from local partners including TfL, the Greater London Authority and funding from section 106 obligations.
Councillor Stuart King, cabinet lead for environment and transport, said: “This programme is essential for us to continue in our ambitions to be London’s most dynamic growth borough, supporting our aims of providing better transport capacity throughout Croydon, reduced air pollution and an exciting cultural offer for all to enjoy.
“Officers have already been working hard with our transport partners to discuss the most effective way of serving the town centre during the upcoming construction period and beyond that as well.”
Councillor Manju Shahul-Hameed, cabinet member for economy and jobs, said: “We’re also, through this programme, creating a world class public realm for the centre of Croydon. New jobs, as Croydon’s economy grows and becomes more resilient, will also be created.
“Cabinet approving this programme shows we are committed to making Croydon an even better place to live, work and visit.”