North Liverpool street will see old buildings demolished and wider pavements installed in part of a plan that also incorporates Liverpool FC’s new store and a hotel. Tony McDonough reports.
Work to transform one of North Liverpool’s best known streets is under way as bulldozers start to demolish derelict buildings.
Walton Breck Road will see scores of derelict buildings demolished or rebuilt, the road narrowed to create wider pavements and make it more pedestrian-friendly.
New outdoor spaces will be created to complement retail, leisure and food and drink operators to stand alongside Liverpool Football Club’s new flagship store and a new hotel.
Liverpool City Council unveiled the vision for the new high street in August last year and, following community consultations ,is now looking to create a main thoroughfare in the neighbourhood that will complement the £260m regeneration project which began in June 2013.
The start of demolitions follows the completion of Liverpool FC’s main stand expansion and the £3.2m restoration of Stanley Park.
The work is to be carried out in phases over the next three years, with the first phase comprising demolitions, planned acquisitions of commercial and mainly vacant residential property and business relocations.
The current demolition of two blocks at Venice and Vienna Street intersections with Walton Breck Road will be finished by March.
The council is in discussions with existing businesses about future opportunities and is working with businesses and other organisations to ensure there is minimum disruption.
It is hoped that eventually the changes will attract new business and investment to the location next to one of the world’s most famous football clubs.
Work on Liverpool FC’s flagship store on the high street has already begun and is expected to complete July 2017, creating 60 permanent and casual roles.
Cllr Ann O’Byrne, deputy mayor of Liverpool, said: “We are not there yet but this is a massive step forward for the Anfield regeneration project and an important day for the community.
“We’ll be creating a new modern high street fit for the 21st century, with roads being narrowed and green corridors from the stunningly beautiful Stanley Park, right the way through to Robson Street.
“At the heart of the project has been community involvement, making sure that everyone is fully aware of all the plans and decisions that are being made and having influence over everything we do.
“It’s great to see from the public consultation, that residents in Anfield are overwhelmingly in support of the work that we’re doing here today and the plans for the future.”