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City all set for revamp centre

An artist’s impress of how the Borough might look after the improvements
An artist’s impress of how the Borough might look after the improvements

A £500,000 council scheme to transform a “neglected” shopping area in the city centre starts this month. It has been drawn up for The Borough and Northgate as an extension of the improvements already carried out in Palace Street, known as the King’s Mile. The work will include widening footpaths, new surfaces and street furniture, including planters seating and lighting, all aimed at giving the area a similar welcoming and attractive feel to Palace Street. The city council project is being funded by the authority’s own budget and cash contributions from developers.

Northgate, Canterbury which the council wants to improve
Northgate, Canterbury which the council wants to improve

The contract has been awarded to Walker Construction, which is due to start work on February 23. Work will also be carried out to spruce up Orange Street, The Friars and Best Lane, which will link the shopping area to the Marlowe Theatre and the Beaney. In a report to the city council executive, which is expected to give the scheme the go-ahead tonight, (Thursday) city council transportation manager Richard Moore says:

“The King’s Mile has been very successful in regenerating Palace Street and providing economic and environmental improvements to the area. Extending the improvements into Northgate has been an aspiration of the city council since 2008 and it is hoped the proposed works will provide equally positive benefits into The Borough and Northgate.”

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The council has been working on the project with local traders and the King’s Mile Association and the work is expected to take 16 weeks. Bobby Gordon, who runs Fella barbers in The Borough, said:

“It’s going to be really good for the area, which has been a bit neglected in the past. We’ve, noticed that a lot of shoppers and our customers don’t often go past us down into Northgate because it’s never looked very inviting, but hopefully this work will change all that and local traders will feel the benefit. We will have to put up with a bit of inconvenience but it I’m sure it will be worth it in the end.”

Herne Bay Gazette, February 5th 2015

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