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Jul 25 2013

Lowlands Park Revamp – Plans Approved by Harrow Council

lowlandsMajor revamp of public spaces to boost culture and economic growth in Harrow

Harrow’s Town Centre is another step closer to a transformation that will see its open spaces brought alive with culture, art and economic opportunities, after plans were approved to redevelop Lowlands Recreation Ground.

Work will now begin on revamping Lowlands into an urban park and outdoor performance space, after the Council’s Planning Committee gave the green light to the £1.28m plans.

The open space, which is next to Harrow College and Harrow-On-The-Hill underground station, will be used to host performances and events which will attract commuters, visitors and shoppers.

It is one of a three major projects that Harrow Council is planning to rejuvenate and draw crowds into the town centre. They will build on the town centre’s economic success which has seen empty shop rates drop.

Harrow Council is also consulting over a new public space in Lyon Road and St John’s Road, which will transform a former car park into a green oasis among a bustling urban area. It will sit alongside a new mixed-use development, bringing provision for retail, café, community, and leisure use. A public exhibition has already been held and the plans are now available online at: http://harrow-consult.limehouse.co.uk/portal/

The third project – a £2million revamp in St Ann’s Road – is already well underway. The development will see the town centre come alive with a place for events, and better trading opportunities, along with new lighting and paving. It is due to be completed by November.

Harrow Council Portfolio Holder for Planning and Regeneration Cllr Will Stoodley said: “We want to put Harrow on the map as a prestige destination to live and work. The Lowlands public space will create a vibrant hub of performing arts, while the proposed development in Lyon Road will breathe new life into the area. These revitalised sites will be a shot in the arm for the local economy. They will create new economic opportunities, along with attracting further investment in the town centre.”

Landscaping work in Lowlands Park will now start and construction of the building – a performance space and café – will begin in September. All work is expected to be completed by the end of the year and the performance space will open in spring 2014.

The park has been designed by award winning architects, Adams and Sutherland, and supported with funding by the Mayor of London.

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9 comments

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  1. Peter Hamill on Facebook

    An outdoor performance space? In England? Rain, aircraft noise, traffic noise and train noise may diminsh the pleasure!

  2. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    @ Peter Hamill – what a splendidly negative comment!

  3. Helen Dashwood

    Well, you do have to admit that an outdoor theatre is going to be unused for approximately 10 months of the year. Factor in the difficulty to get to the open space, particularly if you’re in a wheelchair, and that there’s not much parking in the vicinity – distinct disadvantages towards making it successful!

  4. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    It’s right next to a tube station and a car park; and we haven’t had a rainy day for weeks!

  5. Mark Middleton-Smith

    It takes a special type of Actor/Actress to feel happy performing in front of a constantly moving and often noisy audience in an even more noisy environment. If a Thrust Stage is planned that small number falls even further leaving very few options.

    It would be better to have a proper indoor theatre which offers boundless possibilities by comparrison.

  6. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    It has an indoors also.

  7. Helen Dashwood

    We have only not had a rainy day because we’ve just experienced a heatwave which the forecasters tell us is now over! The pdf public consultation document doesn’t mention anything indoors but, since you say there is, perhaps you could advise what that is intended for?

    With regard to the tube station, it’s totally inaccessible to anyone in a wheelchair of parents with baby buggies!

    Further the information says “revamping Lowlands into an urban park and outdoor performance space”. I would say that this performance space is NOT going to be suitable for a performance of, say, Oklahoma, which needs wings with storage space, flies, an orchestra pit and dressing rooms. A performance space is just a flat area, open to the elements which, as I indicated earlier, is likely to be unusable for 10 months of the year.

  8. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    Helen – every political party in Harrow has lobbied the Mayor of London for disabled access at H on the H station – so far to no avail. And I’ve heard that so many organisations have asked to use it once it’s finished that it’s already oversubscribed. There was even a petition of support handed in by the local residents. And the council aren’t paying for it I understand its TfL money. And the project revamps a run down area. As for Oklahoma – erm, no – mainly lunchtime concerts.

  9. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    PS – if the heatwave’s over why is it still going on?!!

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