Basingstoke started as an attractive market town with clearly defined streets but was transformed following the post-war period. With increasing car usage and the development of the shopping centres – now The Malls and Festival Place – the town centre developed as an area which favoured car and commerce.
The nature of town centres is changing. The demand for retail space is shrinking but there is increasing demand for a diverse and flexible mix of uses so it must adapt to ensure it is sustainable and continues to meet residents’ and visitors’ needs.
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has declared a climate emergency, setting ambitious targets for the borough to be carbon-neutral by 2030. The emerging vision and masterplan for the town centre will be key in helping Basingstoke to meet these targets by delivering sustainable development, improving connectivity and creating more green spaces and boosting biodiversity.