St Peters Quarter BID Launches Renewal Plans

St Peters Quarter Business Improvement District has published its plans for continuing the work underway in the area of the city centre between the Cathedral Quarter and Intu Derby shopping centre.

The businesses in the St Peters Quarter BID area have been canvassed for their views on the work that has already been completed during the five-year programme and the work needed in the next five years.  Their views and research have been compiled into a business plan which was launched on Thursday June 16 and will now be put to the vote. The result of the vote will be announced at the end of July and, if successful, the new BID will launch on September 1 2016. Businesses will pay a levy which raises around £210,000 a year, totalling over £1.2 million over the five year term of the BID.

The new St Peters Quarter business plan highlights four strategic objectives and projects under the vision of ‘establishing the area as a destination by providing an alternative and complementary shopping, leisure and commercial area to Intu and the Cathedral Quarter’.

1. Provide a safe and friendly environment for visitors, workers and residents to enjoy:

  • Work with the police to increase and enhance the uniformed presence and improve police response to address issues which impact businesses
  • Continue with the uniformed Rangers to work closely with the police and other agencies to tackle anti-social behaviour and crime; support businesses in tackling and communicating issues which affect them; welcoming visitors and provide support for events in the area
  • Build on the Business Watch crime reduction schemes
  • Work with Derby City Council to maintain and extend where possible coverage and monitoring of CCTV in the area

2. Make the area smart and attractive – encouraging a sense of pride in St Peters Quarter

  • Improve the physical environment through targeted street cleaning and deep cleaning
  • Influence the use of or add to the quality of street furniture, public art, additional floral displays and Christmas lights
  • Work with landlords and agents to ensure that vacant premises or derelict properties are properly maintained
  • Encourage appropriate plans and proposals for new buildings, refurbishments and public realm developments

3. Create a welcoming and easily accessible place to explore

  • Work with partners to improve parking, traffic flow and the safety of pedestrians
  • Improve the management of peddlers, charity collectors, buskers and other traders
  • Improve pedestrian signage to encourage movement around the area
  • Monitor footfall, commercial performance, parking statistics and customer perceptions

4. Celebrate and promote the diversity of the area and to build the reputation of St Peters Quarter as a great place to shop, relax and be entertained

  • Work with businesses and other organisations to hold events around the area
  • Increase the profile of St Peters Quarter
  • Design and deliver campaigns focusing on key retail and leisure trading periods

All projects delivered are in addition to those services provided by the statutory authorities such as Derby City Council whose services are baselined. Stephen Jeffery is chair of St Peters Quarter Board which includes representatives from businesses across the area.
He said: “A great deal has been achieved since the current St Peters Quarter BID was set up in 2011 when this area was at risk of losing its identity following the opening of Westfield (now Intu) and the development of the Cathedral Quarter. “Having brought the businesses together to act as a collective voice – we have made significant inroads in developing the area as a destination. “St Peters Quarter is now clearly positioned as the area complementing Intu and Cathedral Quarter. There has been substantial, much-needed regeneration and improvements to shop frontages and there is a programme of events which bring a lively atmosphere to the traditional high street. “However, town and city centres and, in particular, traditional high streets across the UK have seen unprecedented change over the past few years.  Lifestyles, shopping habits and the way in which towns and cities are used are very different to what it was five years ago. “St Peters Quarter has been even more exposed than most as changes in shopping trends have reduced the need for high street shops whereas the need to be entertained with places to eat and drink has grown. “There has been a particularly strong message from businesses that if we get the environment right in terms of the physical streetscape and creating a safe and welcoming area -  then visitors will naturally come into and, more importantly, stay in the area.  “This feedback has been reflected in the priorities and projects set out in the business plan. I believe that it will strongly build on the work of the BID so far – focusing on making the area safer, cleaner and more attractive to the benefit of all businesses across all sectors.”

Mr Jeffery continued that the business plan would also build on the key achievements made over the past five years of the current BID, including:

  • Advocating for public realm improvements including the creation of St Peters Cross, the development of the Spot which started in March 2016 (an investment of around £2.2 million) and securing £700,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund to support the renovation of frontages in the Green Lane area
  • Creating the St Peters Quarter as a destination supported by promotions and marketing
  • Recruiting Rangers who are the important conduit between businesses and statutory agencies
  • Tackling crime and anti social behaviour
  • Improving the appearance of the area by targeted street cleaning
  • Providing Christmas lights and Christmas trees
  • Staging street entertainment and events under St Peters Quarter Live programme and involvement in major city festivals such as Derby Festé, Derby Comedy Festival, Derby Book Festival and Derby Folk Festival
  • Encouraging inward investment and reducing vacancy rates – most notably Lee Longlands and Pep & Co as well as a range of other new national and independent businesses in the area

Andy Cheetham, Manager of Pep & Co in East Street continued: “The BID has made a positive difference to our business and our neighbours.  As a company committed to the regeneration of the high street, I would recommend businesses voting yes for this five-year plan.” Rachel Thomas from Derby Theatre added: “It is important that we work collectively to address the issues facing St Peters Quarter – which are similar to every other town and city in the UK.”

Phil Jones, Manager of McDonalds in St Peters Street commented:  “The BID has laid some firm foundations.  If we do not vote in the next programme, it will be a massive set back for the area.” And Russ Hamer, owner of Carpet Square in Babington Lane concluded: “This has always been seen as the bit in the middle of the city centre.  We now have an identity for St Peters Quarter and it is important that the achievements made over the past five years are not lost. “The BID gives the businesses in the area a voice and equal position with other partners across the city. Without a BID, this mechanism will not exist and would leave businesses exposed to dealing with the challenges on their own. “We would urge businesses to vote yes to ensure that the St Peters Quarter BID continues for another five years and builds on this work.”

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