Despite the difficult financial position Leeds City Council is in due to the combined ongoing costs of responding to the pandemic and reduced central government grants, Hunslet and Riverside Councillors have welcomed the news that the majority of the funding promised for improvements to the paved area in-between Hunslet Community Hub and Library and the Penny Hill Centre, has been retained.
The initial budget of £250,000 to create a town/market square has been scaled back to a still significant £150,000 and Councillors say the overall ambition for the space has not changed, but that improvements will now be built in “phases” over a number of years to allow more funding to become available. Designs will now be drawn up to allow this phased approach to happen and for initial improvements to be built as soon as possible.
Cllr Mohammed Iqbal on behalf of the ward Councillors said:
“It is disappointing the initial funding has been scaled back to help the Council balance its budget this year but it is a sign of confidence in the shared ambition of Cllr Elizabeth Nash, Cllr Paul Wray and I, to rejuvenate the public realm in this part of the ward, that most of the funding is still being provided. We will continue to look for additional funding to complete later phases as soon as we can.”
Once designs are finalised, they will be shared with the public and the hope is, work on the new public space will begin in the first half of 2021.
This post is based on a press release issued by Hunslet & Riverside Councillors