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National recognition for City Streetscape project

Issued: 21 Jun 2010

Inverness has gained national recognition at the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) Awards in London. The Inverness City Centre Streetscape and Transportation Project won the Department for Transport Manual for Streets Award at the prestigious CIHT event,beating off entries from around the country. The awards ceremony is a celebration of the highways and transportation industry, and is an opportunity to reward the achievements of those working in the sector and to promote professionalism and best practice to a wider audience.

The Inverness scheme, which has now been complete for a year, was recognised as succeeding in achieving its original objectives of improving the attractiveness of the City Centre as a distinctive place, improving the pedestrian environment, and maintaining safe access and movement throughout the centre. The scheme has created an environment which is inclusive of all users and has achieved a good balance between the 'movement' function and the 'place' function. The principal streets concerned are Union Street, Church Street, Queensgate, Stephens Brae, Inglis Street, Bridge Street, Baron Taylor's Street, Drummond Street, Lombard Street and Ness walk. A number of key lanes are also encompassed by the scheme.

The Highland Council commissioned Land Use Consultants (LUC) to develop a design and administer the scheme in 2005. Partnership working between
the Council, businesses, the public, disability groups, bus operators and Northern Constabulary has served to decrease the dominance of traffic whilst facilitating the use of public transport. A series of pedestrian orientated civic spaces have been created to accommodate informal and formal social and cultural gatherings and events. In doing this the setting and appreciation of the City's architectural heritage and landmark buildings has been enhanced. The streetscape design has incorporated a significant programme of public art. Main contractors for the project were ROK and funding for the project came from the Council, the Scottish Government and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.

Provost Jimmy Gray, Chairman of The Highland Council's Inverness City Committee, said: "This is well deserved recognition for everyone associated with the Streetscape project, including the business community, and highlights the benefits of this significant public investment in Inverness City Centre."

Councillor John Laing, Chairman of the Transport, Environmental & Community Services Committee, said: "This announcement is excellent news for Inverness and demonstrates the high quality of the finished scheme that can stand scrutiny alongside the best in the UK."

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme