HOW can Torquay be made fit for the 21st century? For the first time the community at large has been asked to say how it wants to see the town develop over the next 20 years.
The draft Neighbourhood Plan has been drawn up to look at several areas both in town and out of town which may be ripe for regeneration — or need protecting for the future.
Some of the key proposals include:
Torquay Town Hall car park: redevelopment for superstore with car parking and residential to act as catalyst for regeneration in the wider town centre.
The Castle Circus area could become a key focal point to match the harbour area, with quality retail, office, hotel and leisure uses supported within the area should key buildings become available for reuse including town hall, Electric House, and magistrates' court.
Temperance Street/Lower Union Lane and the area behind Union Street: Redevelopment site to take in the multi-storey car park, possibly the Temperance Street car park and the former BT building.
Could be an anchor store, leisure facilities such as cinema, indoor sports facilities.
Princess Theatre area: Potential to expand/extend/redevelop theatre (without damaging Princess Gardens) to enable it to offer more quality entertainment and larger shows.
Pimlico: Buildings opposite those which front on to Union Street considered appropriate for redevelopment as residential, retail, or related to a transport hub.
Former laundry works site, Rock Road: Residential use incorporating community facilities.
Swan Street warehouses: redevelopment for residential and other town centre uses including retail.
Cary Parade amusement arcade site: High rise development for residential/offices and other town centre uses.
The Strand: Improvement could include redevelopment of buildings. Combination of luxury apartments, improved retail, hotel, small restaurants, while protecting outlook from The Terrace.
Kerswell Gardens estate: recommended to retain its designation for industrial/warehousing but with high quality, well-landscaped development.
Edginswell Business Park: The forum supports planners' decision to reject proposals for a large superstore in what they say should be retained as a high-quality business park. A new railway station is proposed nearby.
Land between Newton Road and Edginswell Lane: Employment land.
Old Newton Road: It is suggested some of the sites could be redeveloped to provide more jobs.
Broomhill Way: The business park could be extended.
Woodland Industrial Estate: Potential for redevelopment/modernisation of some of the estate.
Torre Station yards: Potential for an imaginative development on the site both sides of the railway that would provide employment including office accommodation, retail and residential.
Parkdean, Barton Hall Holiday Park, off Kingskerswell Road, close to The Willows: The forum says this is an area that would be challenging if existing businesses were to be put on the market.
The draft report says it is likely that any change in use would be controversial.
However, the pressure of housing 'will always mean difficult choices in and around Torbay due to land constraints'.
Moles Lane, Shiphay: Land at the top of Hamelin Way may have potential for employment.
Hele roundabout/Barton Hill Road/Barton Hill Way: Potential opportunity for some redevelopment that would improve the commercial property and employment in this area.
Former Barton tip area: Support continued designation as area for sports and leisure.
Fields bounded by Edginswell Lane, Hamelin Way and Moles Lane: Major housing and mixed use development.
AMONG the key points raised for consultation are the enhancement of educational facilities in Brunel Woods, Watcombe, Lummaton Quarry as a key employment space, improved transport links in Barton and Watcombe, reinstating empty houses, possible allotments at the Old Piggeries in Cockington, small scale in-fill housing or business such as in Broadley Drive, Manscombe Road, Broadstone Park Road, reservoir area of Hamelin Way, Torquay railway station, the old school site in Old Mill Road, improved transport links in Ellacombe and identifying brownfield sites for housing or employment such as Albert Court in Market Street.
The forum wants to identify sites for employment in Hele and Lower Barton, and regenerate Hele Road and area.
Sladnor Park in Maidencombe is supported for development as is enhanced shopping and retail areas in St Marychurch, Maidencombe and district.
In Torre and Upton, improvements to existing housing standards are required.
Lymington Road coach park is identified for employment, community and residential development.
The revitalisation of the Torre area is required including support for the recent reversal in the traffic direction.
In Wellswood and Torwood, there is recognition of small hotels, but brownfields sites could be redeveloped for housing, while retaining a redevelopment of Torwood Street.
Throughout the draft plan there is a strong presumption of protection of existing open green spaces including prime sites like Babbacombe Downs and playing fields.