Hemingway Design and NEW Masterplanning have recently completed a Vision for Basingstoke town centre. Basingstoke is a successful growth town, with substantial residential expansion planned, but its town centre has been identified as particularly vulnerable to change. It is heavily reliant on ‘chain’ retail and access by car, has a poor pedestrian environment and suffers from a lack of clear identity.
Our engagement exercise built on the findings of the Horizon 2050 research, and brought detailed insight from over 3,000 responses. This gave the Council a very different picture of local perceptions and priorities.
Using the Council’s extensive landholdings opportunities have been identified to move Basingstoke forward, bringing more public space, more greenery and breaking the barriers created by the large shopping centres and highway infrastructure.
The Vision recognises the importance of Basingstoke’s market town heritage, but that as its population increases it needs to look beyond that, and provide a town centre that reflects its new role. It looks to create a more vibrant and ‘optimistic’ town centre, with an environment that will complement its strategic accessibility and attract innovative new start-ups. Short term interventions are also proposed to generate momentum towards the longer term vision.
The Vision Values for Basingstoke town centre are for it to be: Participatory, Purposeful, Progressive, Prosperous and to have a distinctive sense of Place. By ensuring these values are embedded in all future projects, Basingstoke Town Centre should naturally become a more successful place that puts people first.
We produced a ‘Vision Filter’ as a useful tool in making sure that all actions of Basingstoke as a place both align with the values and contribute to communicating and embedding them further, and are now using this Vision Filter to help the Council refine and deliver projects in line with the Vision.
View the Vision in full here.