A masterplan to transform the derelict Canal Quarter area of Lancaster into a “vibrant district which is welcoming and inclusive” has been formally adopted by Lancaster City Council.The aim of the masterplan is to bring back into use many of Lancaster’s important buildings and derelict sites to create a vibrant, sustainable, and active place which is integrated with the city centre and the Lancaster Canal. It envisages the creation of a new sustainable mixed-use neighbourhood with around 580 new homes that cater for families and individuals.
Safe pedestrian and cycle friendly streets would provide new pedestrian access to Lancaster Canal. Space has also been set aside for business, retail, food and beverage opportunities to complement the existing offer in the city centre. The masterplan also introduces two new public squares to provide lively social spaces for events along a new Brewery Street.
Coun Nick Wilkinson, cabinet member with responsibility for regeneration, skills and digital innovation, said: “The regeneration of the Canal Quarter area is a key part in enhancing Lancaster’s role in the local economy. The masterplan is a residential lead scheme but does include some commercial, cultural and leisure elements with the aim of complementing our existing city centre offering. “It is envisaged that the delivery of the whole masterplan will take around 10 years. I appreciate this sounds like a long time but rather than try to develop the whole site in one go the council has opted for a phased approach with the target of starting the initial phases at the end of 2024.
“The first phases will focus on the delivery of much needed new housing for our local community and help to breathe new life in this derelict area.”Lancaster’s Canal Quarter covers around six acres of land, immediately to the east of the city centre.While the vision covers the entire site, only part of it is in the ownership of the city council and sites will be brought forward in phases as funding opportunities become available.One early phase, for the site known as Coopers Fields on the upper and lower St Leonardgate car parks, will see the building of 139 new affordable homes.
By Gayle Rouncivell, Lancaster Guardian Reporter.