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Slough Urban Renewal and Waterside Places submit plans for Stoke Wharf development

The team bringing forward plans to rejuvenate Stoke Wharf – the area which sits at the end of the Slough branch of the Grand Union Canal – have submitted their planning application for the comprehensive redevelopment of the area. The £68m scheme draws on the heritage of Slough and the Grand Union Canal coupled with its aspirations for the future, improving access to the canal and bringing it back into use for local residents and visitors, while providing much-needed housing and amenity improvements to the surrounding area.

The proposals have been submitted by a partnership between SUR – a joint venture between Slough Borough Council and Morgan Sindall Investments, which focusses on creating iconic places in Slough; and Waterside Places – a partnership between national urban regenerator, Muse Developments and the Canal & River Trust, which specialises in the residential-led regeneration of unused waterside areas in urban locations across the UK to create vibrant new communities, while investing back into Britain’s waterways.

The submission to Slough Borough Council follows a comprehensive engagement from mid-2019. During this time, local residents and community stakeholders were encouraged to view the detailed plans and provide their feedback and suggestions.

Overall, around 1,400 local residents viewed the plans throughout the consultation period; either through the dedicated project website – https://stokewharf.commonplace.is/ – or at one of the public exhibitions held at the Slough Canal Festival and The Curve in 2019. Over 70% of responses from the consultation were positive of the teams’ plans to regenerate the site. Following this consultation period, the team have been reviewing feedback to ensure the plans respond to the needs of local residents and stakeholders.

Like many towns and cities across the UK, Slough is in need of new, affordable homes for its local residents. The Stoke Wharf project forms a key part of the council’s regeneration plans to meet this need, transforming Slough into a vibrant location whilst providing places to live, work and enjoy.

Stoke Wharf will contribute to this in a number of ways. Overall, the development will:

1. Deliver significant enhancements to Bower Recreation Ground, including new play equipment, a new multi-use games area, cricket net and improved cycle paths
2.Create a new public realm and enhanced open spaces around the end of the Grand Union canal for local people, resulting in an overall increase in amenity space for the community
3. Be a new destination, offering a café culture and leisure uses for those living within and beyond this new neighbourhood
4. Offer an accessible place to live, with sustainable transport at its heart, providing new visitor moorings on the canal, electric vehicle charging points and a car club, together with a new bus stop and cycle hire docking station
5. Encourage clean and green living with optimised energy efficiency, and reduced emissions
6. Provide 312 high-quality new homes with a mix of tenures and sizes to suit different local different housing needs, including the need for affordable homes

Andy Howell, general manager of Slough Urban Renewal, said: “The regeneration of Stoke Wharf is a key component of the ongoing redevelopment of Slough and we’re delighted to move to the next stage of the journey to deliver this exciting scheme.

“The innovative proposals we’re bringing forward will create high-quality, much-needed housing for local residents, improve the water-space facilities, and deliver significant enhancements to the surrounding area, including the Bower Recreation Ground.

“We’d like to thank all of those who made their voice heard and contributed to our plans. As we move forward, we’ll continue to work closely with the community as we bring forward the scheme together.

“This has been a long, careful process and we look forward to working collaboratively with the council and community over the coming months to breathe life back onto the banks of the Grand Union Canal.”