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Work on improving Dunstable High Streetstarted at the end of September. The public told us you wanted to prioritise pedestrians, as they are the ones spending money in the shops and businesses, through a boulevard-style high street with cafes on wider pavements; more greenery; and more public areas and places to sit. 

The improvements will take around 12 weeks.Initially we’ve started by removing the railings and some other unnecessary street clutter from the High Street,so that pedestrians can get to different areas around town. We will also be installing four ‘gateway’ features at key locations to help to define the town centre, and to indicate to drivers that they are entering a pedestrian-friendly area. 

The gateway features will also include information about the history of Dunstable and have a map to show key places of interest. The Northern gateway will be by Grove House Gardens; the Southern gateway by Market Square; the Eastern gateway by Priory Church; and the Western gateway by St. Mary’s Gate. Here are some pictures here for you to seen how our improvements will help enhance the town.

 

We will continue to bid for more funding, so we can undertake further improvements to the High Street area, including to the layout of the main crossroads. These are also things we spoke to you about last year. You can read more about our ambitions at www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/yourhighstreet

Meanwhile, the construction of the new £20.1million Dunstable Centre community buildingin Court Drivecontinues.The new building will incorporate a brand new, state-of-the-art leisure facility, including gym and swimming pools; a relocated, new and bigger library; new crèche; new, bigger café; and flexible community space for other public and community services, such as Citizens’ Advice and adult day care.

The brand-new library will be a large, bright and airy open-plan space, incorporating state-of-the-art equipment. The space will flow seamlessly within the main foyer and will be zoned for different activities, as well as flexible space for activities, events and clubs. In preparation for their move, the current library in Vernon Place has changed its opening hours.This will help to provide time to sort out the old building, the recruitment and training of new staff and the move to the new building. Its last day at the current site will be 22 December, when it will close its doors for the last time at 2pm, ahead of the move. 

During the closure, library users will be able to access the same library services in Houghton Regis and Leighton Buzzard. The library will be running a drop-off point for people to return library items at The Grove Theatre. The drop-off point will be open between 10am and 5pm, Monday to Friday, and 10am and 2pm on Saturdays throughout the closure period. Items will have been issued for a longer period than usual, so that members will not be charged fines whilst the library is closed. The new building is on-track open in winter 2018/19. You can read more about the new building and its progress at www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/DLC

Councillor Nigel Young
Executive Member for Regeneration

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