Five key projects make up the March Future High Streets Fund programme. They were selected from a large number of project proposals.
The proposals needed to fit the strategic direction of the town, align to the funding priorities and criteria of the FHSF programme, maximise value for money for the public sector and be deliverable within the timeframe, with acceptable risks. A long list of proposals was created through engagement with various stakeholders.
The final five projects, below, were selected through engagement with stakeholders, urban design studies, cost estimates and an options appraisal exercise undertaken by a range of consultants in partnership with the Council.
1. A dramatic intervention to transform Broad Street - an exciting redevelopment to create a welcoming pedestrianised open space in the centre of town.
This public realm project links closely to the March Area Transport Study (MATS), which is being delivered by the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority, Cambridgeshire County Council, and Fenland District Council. The MATS project will address existing traffic flow/congestion problems in Broad Street, with the FHSF project developing the public realm following the road lay-out alterations. Together the projects will improve traffic flows in the town centre, whilst allowing Broad Street to become more pedestrian and cycle friendly.
2. Opening up the Riverside - Bringing the River into the heart of the town to create a pleasant environment for all.
3. Redeveloping the historic Market Place - Re-instating historic features close to the town hall and a refresh of the car park.
4. Acre Road Regeneration - A new gateway development to link existing cultural assets with the Town Centre.
5. Reactivating vacant units & Flats Over Shops programme - A grant programme to support owners in bringing vacant shops into use and to assist in the conversion of upper floor space into town centre living.
FDC secured the final funding required for an ambitious £8.4 million investment programme for March town centre. The funding will deliver the five projects and create real transformational change for the market town and the people that live, work and visit.
These projects will be delivered in collaboration with Fenland District Council's proud delivery partners including: