A new strategy for Liverpool city centre's Main Retail Area for the next 10 to 15 years has been published.
The roadmap for new development and investment is the result of an independent study led by property consultant Drivers Jonas Deloitte.
A joint private and public sector partnership between Liverpool City Council, Liverpool Vision, the city central Business Improvement District team, Grosvenor, Land Securities and Merseytravel, will have responsibility of delivering the outcomes of the strategy.
The MRA encompasses Grosvenor's Liverpool One development and the City Central Business Improvement District incorporating Whitechapel, Metquarter, Cavern Quarter, Williamson Square, St John's Centre, Clayton Square and Bold Street areas as well as the Renshaw Street and the Lime Street corridor.
The report makes several recommendations including:
- prioritising retail development in northern and eastern areas
- improving public realm and pedestrian access routes
- and a stronger delivery of city centre management, maintenance, branding and promotion
Various investments from the private and public sectors is expected to deliver many of the strategy's recommendations in addition to current ongoing work to improve the Renshaw Street and Lime Street area as well as Mere Park's investment in its Central Village scheme.
Drivers Jonas Deloitte, which acted as planning consultants on Liverpool One, said that a key focus of the MRA's future development is to connect other areas of the city centre, particularly with the city's growing knowledge quarter.
The consultant makes a number of other specific recommendations in the report including the need to promote a greater independent retail offering across the MRA, and to reduce traffic on key footfall routes including extending the existing traffic regulation order at the bottom of Bold Street to cover the entire street.
The report's action plans also suggest supporting the new £200m leisure led anchor scheme in Central Village and improving the quality of the Cavern Quarter to support the night time economy.
Drivers Jonas Deloitte, which assembled a team to deliver the project that included designers BDP and retail consultants Lunson Mitchenhall, was commissioned by the council-led partnership to establish a strategy for the second phase of the city's regeneration following the launch of Grosvenor's Liverpool One development.
Cllr Malcolm Kennedy, cabinet member for regeneration at Liverpool City Council, said: "It is vital that we build on the successes of the past 10 years and that the public and private sector partners responsible for this strategy continue to work together to deliver the recommended actions. The main retail area has seen significant investment over the past 10 years both from the private sector and from Liverpool City Council, who have invested heavily in improving the public realm.
"Liverpool's economy and its ability to attract increasing numbers of visitors have benefited as a result, but it is important that we don't rest on our laurels. One of our main priorities in the short term will be to work with the smaller independent businesses in areas like Bold Street, Lime Street and Renshaw Street to help them deliver their plans."