Business improvement plans for Hemel will create ‘thriving’ hub

Hemel Hempstead town centre

Hemel Hempstead town centre

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Plans for a ‘business improvement district’ have been drawn up as the multimillion pound revitalisation project of Hemel Hempstead continues.

Dacorum Borough Council (DBC) has joined forces with a major town centre investor to continue the scheme after the success of its £30 million Hemel Evolution regeneration programme.

It will see the local authority work with Capital and Regional to establish a business improvement district (BID) to create further opportunities for local shops and businesses.

Councillor Graham Sutton, DBC’s portfolio holder for planning and regeneration, said: “We’ve laid the foundations for a revitalised town centre and opened the doors to investors. The time is now right to work in partnership with the private sector to help businesses in Hemel Hempstead decide what is right for their town and take an active hand in achieving their goals.”

The 1950s New Town has already seen dramatic change including family-friendly improvements on the main pedestrianised area, a new bus interchange and restoration of the historic Jellicoe Water Gardens urban oasis.

The Capital and Regional property investment trust purchased The Marlowes Shopping Centre and adjoining buildings earlier this year for £53.8 million.

Its aim is now to reposition The Marlowes area as part of the town’s wider transformation into a ‘social hub fit for a 21st century retail and leisure experience’.

Ken Ford, executive director of Capital & Regional said: “Together with Dacorum Borough Council, Capital & Regional wants to create new opportunities for businesses and investors. A BID will unite them behind the common goal of creating a thriving retail and leisure destination and strong local economy.”