You may have noticed the gaping hole where the old King Street cinema used to be.
Its demolition was the first step in a generally liked redevelopment that had been extensively consulted on and that would have:
- delivered a new cinema
- converted the ugly Town Hall extension into modern housing
- filled in the windswept ‘undercroft’ with attractive, useable space, including an entrance to the new cinema and a cafe
- removed the hideous concrete walkways behind the existing extension and replaced them with soft landscaping and trees to create a new public space in front of the art deco Town Hall
- provided new disabled access and lifts for the Town Hall
- created modern office space, easily accessible to residents, for the Council’s residents’ services
The Labour council has terminated the agreement with the developer after refusing for a year to meet with them and now wants to go back to the drawing board.
I very much fear a long delay, with nothing except a gaping hole in King Street, to end up with a new scheme that will not be any better than the one that has now been cancelled.