Release date: 21 January 2019
A quirky interactive wall and a seaside-themed public square are set to be the focus of major improvements to transform a key street in Worthing’s town centre.
The proposal to pedestrianise the busy area of Portland Road is being developed by West Sussex County Council in partnership with Worthing Borough Council through the Worthing Growth Programme.
New plans will be revealed at a public exhibition held between Monday 21 January and Friday 8 February in Worthing Library on Richmond Road. Residents are invited to come along and view the plans for the Portland Road area. They will also have the opportunity to give comments about the new designs by completing a form or an online survey by visiting Worthing Borough Council's Proposals for Portland Road Area page.
Two drop-in events will also take place in Worthing Library (24 January 12pm-5pm) and Worthing Town Hall (6 February 12pm-5pm) where local people can discuss the project with representatives from West Sussex County Council and Worthing Borough Council.
Residents, councillors and businesses have previously been consulted about improvements to Portland Road and their feedback has been used to create final designs. Once the plans have been approved, work on the area is set to begin in early 2020.
Councillor Kevin Jenkins, Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Regeneration, said: “These improvements have the potential to turn Portland Road into a vibrant destination for visitors and residents, as well as contributing to our wider ambition to regenerate the town centre.
“We made it clear from the start that the input of everyone was to be welcomed. Now the designs have been revealed I hope they can see that we not only listened but we have delivered.
“I believe what is presented are plans which are truly distinctive to Worthing as a location, creating a really special place where people of all ages can come together.”
Along with a new continental-style boulevard, the proposals include creating an interactive art installation with revolving square cubes.
This will be flanked by new planted ‘green walls’, trees and semi-vertical bike racks, all of which will make the area more attractive.
At the heart of the new area will be a place for people to gather and socialise at all times of the day.
Above the street, designers have suggested a canopy of suspended kites, which light up at night and become an eye-catching attraction in the local area.
The plans, known as public realm improvements, form part of a Growth Deal agreed by West Sussex County Council and Worthing Borough Council in 2017. The aim is to create cohesive, well designed and connected public spaces between Worthing Railway Station, the town centre and seafront.
Louise Goldsmith, Leader of West Sussex County Council said, “The Portland Road project kick-starts ambitious plans to completely transform Worthing town centre under the Growth Deal agreement. The eleven public realm projects form part of a £12 million plan delivered over the next five to ten years to regenerate the public spaces in the town centre.
“This really is an exciting time for Worthing, and I encourage as many people as possible to come along to the Portland Road exhibition and see the innovative designs for themselves.”
For more information about the Adur and Worthing Growth Deal visit the West Sussex County Council website.
Pictured: Proposed designs for Portland Road in Worthing include a pedestrianised, continental-style boulevard