Cllr Norma Gibbes asked this question at council assembly this week:
What progress is the council making with plans for the regeneration of Albion Street?
Cllr Fiona Colley, cabinet member for regeneration and corporate strategy, replied:
We have been working in partnership with the local community, in particular the Albion Street Steering Group to significantly progress the regeneration of Albion Street.
To date a number of public realm work packages have been completed at various sites along the street. Also, power points have been installed along the western section of the street that will be used for street markets.
A number of larger scale initiatives are also in train:
- The procurement of architects to build the replacement of the Albion Street Primary School has commenced. The new building is programmed to be in place by September 2016.
- We are coming towards the end of a compulsory purchase order (CPO) process in relation to the former public toilets that have been an eyesore and potential health and safety risk for several years.
- Once the public toilets have been acquired, they will be incorporated into a new pocket park that will be built in front of the Norwegian Church. Officers are in detailed discussions with the church to include their land in the new facility and for the church to make a contribution towards the cost of this new piece of public realm.
- Work to create a popup shop is nearing completion and the property will soon be let. The shop will be available on a short term basis to community groups, cultural organisations and business start-ups.
- The former Rotherhithe Library has been included in phase 2 of the Housing Direct Delivery programme and the design proposal will include community or commercial space on the ground floor.
- Discussions are ongoing with the Albion Street Surgery to assist them to find a new home and move out of their current, not-fit-for-purpose facility. The preferred option at the moment is to relocate the surgery into the ground floor of the redeveloped Rotherhithe Library site.
- Court action is underway to complete the purchase of three dilapidated and unsightly houses, 71, 73 and 75 Albion Street. Once we have control of the houses the site will be brought back into beneficial use.