Feedback sought on Withington Village refresh
Manchester City Council is seeking views on a regeneration framework that aims to improve public spaces and reduce traffic in the South Manchester suburb.
The Withington Village framework was drawn up by planning consultant Nexus Planning with architect Broadway Malyan, planner WSP and conservation consultant BB Heritage Studio.
Among the proposals are improvements to Copson Road and Wilmslow Road, the two main commercial streets in the area.
Options for these roads include increasing the number of independent businesses, upgrading public realm, improving crossings on Wilmslow Road and pedestrianising Copson Street.
An enhanced public space outside the library at Rutherford Place is also suggested, as is a review of the car parks in the area, which could be transformed to provide additional public space. Existing shopfronts would also be restored under the plans.
Cllr Suzanne Richard, Manchester City Council’s executive member for housing and regeneration, said: “We need to be ambitious with our district centres. Covid-19 and lockdown have shown the importance of supporting local businesses.
“This sort of development plan will prove crucial if we are serious about helping local areas to recover following the pandemic.”
The framework aims to build on the progress made by Withington Village Regeneration Partnership, a group of local stakeholders formed in 2017.
The group has established pop-up cultural activities in vacant buildings across Withington and organised the successful Withington Walls crowdfunding campaign, aimed at raising money to brighten up walls and shutters in the village with artwork.
Dave Payne, chair of Withington Village Regeneration Partnership, said: “There’s a huge amount of ambition in Withington to improve the neighbourhood and attract investment to support local businesses.
“We are lucky to have a proactive community of people who are eager to work together and meet the potential of the village.”