Our guest speaker for this event was David Falla, Chairman of the Vision Team. This was a very engaging evening. It was fully attended and the food and service were excellent.
The Visions for town and the Bridge include a 20 year horizon with action being taken to achieve results for the short, mid and long term. David was extremely passionate about this project and spoke with great enthusiasm. He explained that amendments in these areas of the island were required to deal with changes in the demographic, including, for example, changes in rising sea levels. There is also a desire to make the best use of the spaces that we have and to create and strengthen town areas.
David presented the Visions and explained that the States Policy Council, through the Strategic Land Planning Group, had built in a requirement for the Visions as a part of the 2011 Strategic Land Use Plan for Guernsey. He described the process which had been undertaken by the Vision Team and those involved in the project, which had included place check visits to the centres and also workshop sessions. A Visioning team has been assembled representing the Chamber of Commerce, The Town Centre Partnership, the Vale, St Sampsons and St Peter Port Douzaines and Constables supported by States Departments including the Policy Council, PSD , Planning , Highways, Culture and Leisure Departments.
Ten themes have been developed for the two centres including driving the Island’s economy, creating thriving centres, unifying and linking in towns and harbours, making the Bridge and Town better places to live, embracing new architecture and celebrating heritage, improving road safety, pedestrian and cycle routes as a part of improving the public realm.
Ideas included relocating the bus terminus to North Beach and redeveloping the existing bus terminus areas and a sea front location, traffic calming in St Peter Port to help ease congestion, and underground car parking to keep cars out of the centre of town.
It is clear that a truly cohesive approach has been applied to this project. The ideas presented were realistic and achievable. The presentation was very well received by YBG members and guests.