Traffic through the heart of Preston’s university campus is set to be diverted as ambitious proposals for a new public square in the city are unveiled.Advertisement
The University of Central Lancashire is proposing the replace the Adelphi roundabout and Fylde Building with a new civic square.
Known as Adelphi Square it is being hailed as an “iconic gateway” to the university campus – bordered by a brand new building.
The Adelphi pub remains as part of a new square with trees and steps set out with traffic restricted to go around the edges of the square and no longer turn left out of Fylde Road.
UCLan’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Gerry Kelleher said: “Over the coming decade we will invest in the region of £200 million to create a world-class campus environment which blends new facilities with the creation of public, green spaces to encourage people from all over the City to visit and enjoy the campus.
“Developing a skilled workforce which meets local, national and international needs is central to our development plans. Future investments like the Engineering Innovation Centre will reflect that goal, helping to create jobs, kick-start regeneration and attract inward investment into the City.
“Our vision for the future of the University is shared and supported by our project partners Preston City Council and Lancashire County Council. We also want to listen to and work with our neighbours and all the community, to ensure the City and region benefit from the tremendous cultural and economic opportunities that our plan will create.”
Major university car parks are set to to be moved to the edge of the campus.
University bosses are also investing in the former canal basin at Maudland Bank to become a new walkway and cycle route.
Councillor Peter Rankin, leader of Preston City Council, said: “This is a significant development in the continuing success story of the University. A successful university is crucial for Preston. We now have an opportunity to create a lasting legacy for future generations of students, academics, local people and for the City as a whole.”
The university states in its new masterplan for major building on its Preston campus it wants the Adelphi Square to become a meeting place for staff, students and local residents between the university and the city.
A multi-million pound building is to replace the current Fylde building which borders the Adelphi roundabout – and this will link to the existing UCLan library on St Peter’s Street via an elevated glass walkway.
Lee MacNeall, UCLan Students’ Union President, said: “I think this is a brilliant opportunity for UCLan to develop the campus. Not only will it be great for students, enabling them to explore Preston for the great City it is, but I also think it can play a key role in boosting the local economy.”
A Lancashire County Council spokesman said: “During the development of the draft Masterplan, UCLan worked with the county council on options for highway changes that would complement both the campus area and the wider city centre.
“The Fishergate ‘shared space’ scheme was well under way and the experience from this, as well as other ‘shared space’ schemes in the country, was used as guiding principles for potential improvements. The challenging area for the development is the Adelphi roundabout.
“The county council carried out some analysis which indicates that a shared space approach would be feasible. This suggestion was then added to the Masterplan proposals.
“The next stage is for UCLan to complete the consultation and produce the final Masterplan document. Before any firm highway changes can be considered further, much more traffic analysis on routing and designing for a safe and convenient highway needs to be carried out.
“The first step, however, is to collect up-to-date information on traffic and pedestrian movements. Work on this is already under way.”
Four public consultation events are to be held for Prestonians to find out more about the plans.
Friday 6 February, 12 noon-7.00pm, UCLan Foster Building Foyer
Wednesday 11 February, 12 noon-7.00pm, UCLan Foster Building Foyer
Saturday 21 February, 10.00am-4.00pm, St George’s Shopping Centre, Upper Mall space, Friargate entrance (top of the escalator).
Wednesday 25 February, 10.00am-4.00pm St George’s Shopping Centre, Upper Mall space, Friargate entrance (top of the escalator).
After a month of consultation the university is due to apply for planning permission for the scheme to begin.
You can view the full masterplan on the UCLan website.
You can find out all about the Adelphi Quarter’s past over one hundred years in a historic account by Paul D. Swarbrick by selecting this link here.
What do you think of the plans? Let us know in the comments below