Plans to improve a route connecting rail to river in King’s Lynn have been unveiled and the public are being invited to help to shape the artwork on the route.
The rail to river proposals have been informed by previous consultation which revealed a desire for public realm improvements in the town. The proposals form part of the Public Realm business case which is the second to be signed off by the Town Deal board and submitted to Government.
And, local people are once again being invited to get involved by coming up with ideas and themes for the art that will form part of the route.
Vicky Etheridge, Chair of the Town Deal Public Realm and Repurposing Working Group which is leading the project said: “Our consultation over the last couple of years has shown that there is a real appetite for public realm improvements such as better signage and seating, public art, and pop-up shops.
“Informed by this feedback, and based on our own research, we’ve developed the rail to river project to enhance a key route in the town.
“We’re starting at the rail station as this is a major entrance point and one of the first places people see on arrival into King’s Lynn. And, we’re travelling through to the river with our improvements because we also know from consultation that this is an aspect that people believe we could make more of for the town.”
The project will include:
- High impact public realm improvements: at the rail station and Purfleet Street;
- Pop-up opportunities: at least three pop up units to provide opportunities for start-up and small businesses to trial new products and services at Purfleet Street;
- New outdoor seating and tree planting: at the rail station and Purfleet Street;
- Secure cycle storage unit and facility: relocation of existing cycle stands on Purfleet Street, replaced with a secure bike hub facility in Baker Lane;
- Better navigation: 30 new finger post signs will be installed to make it easier to get around town. And, digital signage will also be introduced at the rail station that will also promote what’s on in the town;
- Artwork: from rail to river.
As well as enhancing the appearance of the town, and making it easier to navigate, the proposals are expected to increase footfall into the town centre.. The improvements will also benefit local businesses and specifically small, start-up businesses accessing the pop-up opportunities.
Councillor Graham Middleton, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Business, Culture, and Heritage said: “We’re really grateful to everyone who has taken part in previous surveys that have informed these proposals – and we’re asking people to once again help us by offering their ideas and suggestions for the artwork.
“We want this to be highly attractive and engaging for people to enjoy, and later this year, we will be commissioning an artist – or artists – to work with us.
“As well as sharing your ideas online, we’re also inviting people to take part in a workshop to develop the theme and scope of the artwork.
“This is an exciting project and one that is set to bring significant, visible improvements to our town centre, making it more appealing and attractive for both local people and visitors alike.”
The project, which also forms part of the wider public realm action plan for King’s Lynn, is a Town Deal fast track business case which means it has already been submitted to government. Subject to government approval and the release of the funding, it is hoped that work will start on delivering the project in the summer, carrying on until spring 2023.
Anyone wishing to offer ideas and suggestions for the artwork, and/or sign up to the workshop can do so on the Rail to River feedback form by 5pm on Sunday 13 February 2022.