Improved housing, transformed buildings, spruced up public spaces and refurbished public toilets are part of an ambitious £8.5m investment plan by Worthing Borough Council, it has been announced.
Bringing public car parks up to scratch as well as buying more accommodation to ease a rising demand are also on the agenda of the Council’s capital investment programme over the next three years.
In a report to the Council’s Joint Strategic Committee (JSC) councillors were warned that the financial climate remained tough for local authorities but they were still able to back a range of investments to improve quality of life in the Borough.
A full refurbishment of Buckingham Road and High Street multi-story car parks costing £5m is planned.
Playgrounds across Worthing will also receive an upgrade, with Palatine Park Play Area, Brooklands Pleasure Park and Durrington Recreation Ground all set to undergo works over the next three years.
Worthing town centre will benefit from works to enhance public spaces and improve facilities. Public toilets will also be brought up to a good standard following a comprehensive review. On the hit list will be toilets in Marine Gardens, Sea Lane Cafe Car Park, the Lido and the Pier.
The vital role of Worthing’s parks and open spaces is also recognised in the programme. Seafront locations will be revived with new sustainable planting and landscaping schemes being introduced for Steyne Gardens and Beach House Grounds. A new water supply system to the Splash Pad attraction will be funded as will the replacement of the timber decking on Worthing Pier.
The Council is looking to purchase temporary accommodation and bring empty properties back into use to help address the rising cost of temporary and emergency accommodation in the private sector. Grants will also be offered to registered social landlords to help improve the supply of affordable housing.
A new stage lighting and sound proofing system is to be installed at the Pavilion Theatre and a new ramp for people with disabilities built .
Fitness equipment will be introduced at Lyons Farm and Northbrook Recreation Ground, and the tennis courts at Field Place will be reconstructed.
Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Resources, Cllr Elizabeth Sparkes, said:
“We are pleased to set out these plans over the next three years, which will deliver investment across Worthing and demonstrate our commitment to our communities. In the current financial climate it is never easy to find the resources to invest but we have a sensible plan here that will deliver real benefits across a range of services for the people of this Borough.”
The capital investment programme is set on a two year basis to enable better programming of schemes and to ensure cost-effective procurement. The £8.5m is on top of existing plans for investment.
Funding from the programmes will come from prudential borrowing, capital grants, revenue and reserve funding and capital receipts.