By Leah Conway
Possible £210 million plans are in the works and could transform Huddersfield Town Centre if given the go-ahead.
The “Cultural Heart” plans include creating a cultural hub with leisure, arts and music at its core. The stage 1 plans are waiting for the approval of Kirklees Council’s Cabinet.
The “cultural heart” is part of the wider Huddersfield Blueprint regeneration plans. It could see the Queensgate and Piazza area into this cultural hub including the library and market building retained, but the Piazza Shopping Centre demolished in favour of a new Town Park.
The plans would also include a new entertainment venue with a capacity of 1200 to 2500, an art gallery, a new library, a food hall, museum and multi-storey car park.
Other future proposals include hotels, restaurants, bars, offices and residential areas.
It is hoped that the demolition of the Piazza Shopping Centre will also improve the connection between the town centre, the University of Huddersfield and the surrounding buildings and area.
Future of the “Culture Health” Plans
The proposals will be voted on next week on 16 November and will shape the future of the “culture heart” plans. If approved, the designing stage and further planning such as the business case and masterplan is expected to continue until July 2022 where it will be brought back for approval.
Bring Huddersfield Town Centre to Life
Councillor Peter McBride, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, said: “This is such an exciting project which will bring our vision for Huddersfield Town Centre to life.
“The Cultural Heart is what will make Huddersfield stand out as a unique destination for visitors, with a vibrant hub of music, arts, food and more all in one area, overlooking a stunning new Town Park capable of hosting large outdoor events.
“This is a game-changer for Huddersfield and the whole of Kirklees. Our Cultural Heart will offer something for every resident and will draw visitors in from far and wide with events and activities throughout the day and into the night.
“The demolition of the Piazza will open the town centre up, better connecting it to the University of Huddersfield and its students and staff, with the green, safe and welcoming Town Park acting as a perfect gateway into everything the town has to offer.
“When we launched the Blueprint in 2019, I said we meant business, and this might just be the most exciting step forward in the transformation of Huddersfield into a thriving, modern-day town centre with a boosted economy through increased footfall and an unrivalled cultural offer.
“Our ambitions go far beyond Huddersfield, we’re continuing to step up our plans to regenerate Dewsbury Town Centre and all of our other towns across Kirklees. This is a very exciting time for residents, businesses and visitors to Kirklees.”