Improvements planned for Wisbech waterfront area dubbed as “Beirut” earlier this year

FOUR months after the Nene Waterfront in Wisbech was described by a council leader as “like driving through Beirut,” plans are afoot to spruce up the area around The Boathouse.

In a joint “leaders quick win” initiative between Fenland District Council and Cambridgeshire County Council, road ways will be resurfaced, weeds removed, hoardings repainted and fencing repaired.

When the Wisbech Standard hosted a breakfast meeting for councillors and business leaders back in March, county council leader Councillor Nick Clarke highlighted the ugly road and hoardings around the Boathouse.

He promised to find some “pennies in the coffers” to sort out the area, saying: “This is a prime site in Wisbech - a fantastic facility. But currently it’s like driving through Beirut.

“We are going to find some pennies in the coffers somehow to sort that road out, because at the moment it looks like a war zone and that’s not conducive to attracting businesses into a building like this.” As part of the 2020 Vision for Wisbech, leaders of both councils agreed that action was needed to improve the look of the area.

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When Fenland District Council’s cabinet meets on July 26, councillors are expected to agree to the spending of �28,000 on interim improvements to the waterfront development sites, and they will be told that Cambridgeshire County Council is funding some resurfacing.

A report says that although many of the facets of the Nene Waterfront have been completed, the financial down turn has led to the build out of associated development sites being delayed, and the vacant sites are likely to remain unused.

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“The existing highway network is in poor condition and the temporary hoardings around the development sites are starting to look tired,” says a report. Councillors will be told that the two-way project “will result in a comprehensive visual improvement to this important investment area of the town, meeting the respective leaders earlier steer.”

Cambridgeshire County Council Leader, Councillor Nick Clarke, said this week: “This work was something which I promised to carry forward when Cabinet met in Wisbech recently and I am delighted that we are working with Fenland DC to continue the regeneration of this important area of Wisbech which will help the town grow and expand the opportunities in an around the old port area of Wisbech.

“By working together, local authorities are able to achieve much more with the limited resources which are available to them at times of very tight budgets.”

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