Folowing calls from both local people and national organisations, the Secretary of State has decided to hold a public inquiry into the Centros plans earlier this month (see news story).
Concerns about the scheme cited by the Government Office of the North West include the overall sustainability of the scheme, the impact it will have on traffic, the effect it will have on retail in the existing city centre and in other sub-regional centres such as Kendal, and whether the impact on conservation areas of the demolition of so many historic buildings can be justified.
“These are exactly the same concerns that we have over these plans," commented Cal Giles from It’s Our City, which has proposed alternative and supports community-led development in Lancaster. "We're delighted that all of these problems with Centros’s scheme will now be considered by an independent body”.
“It’s Our City has been asking detailed questions about all of these issues since Centros came to Lancaster," adds Emilie Secker. "Both Centros and the Council have, largely, failed to provide adequate answers. The public inquiry means that now they will have to.
It’s Our City web site: www.itsourcity.org.uk