PUBLIC CHANCE TO NAME SEASIDE LANDMARK
Public views are to be sought on the permanent name of a landmark seaside tourist attraction, it was revealed today.
Plans for a 80ft-high structure, given the working title of a ‘vertical pier’, to form the centrepiece of a £30m regeneration of Redcar seafront have been developed over the past few years.
Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council is now preparing to stage a major community-wide competition, inviting people to submit their own ideas as to what the development should be known as.
The authority is drawing up detailed plans for the competition, which will be designed to invite the views of residents, businesses and schoolchildren.
And with the vertical pier set to open in two years’ time, it is hoped that the initiative will give the local community a sense of pride and ownership in the exciting project.
Although details of the competition have yet to be finalised, it is expected that public views will be invited through an array of different methods.
An expert panel – including representatives of businesses, young people, local media and the Council – would be asked to draw up a shortlist of the best entries. Those in the running would then be put to a final public vote.
The ‘vertical pier’ project was developed in the wake of the Council’s biggest ever public consultation, which took place in 2008 and saw people calling for an iconic attraction to bring visitors and investment to Redcar.
An open design competition – chaired by the Royal Institute of British Architects – led to Harrogate-based firm Smeeden Foreman devising the winning proposal.
The structure is now part of a wider regeneration programme, which includes new sea defences being built by the Environment Agency and improvements to the Redcar promenade.
An £8m business hub is also being created on the seafront, providing a focal point from which the Borough’s burgeoning creative industries can flourish.
Councillor Mark Hannon, Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: “This planned competition will give the whole community the chance to come together to suggest their own names for this important and exciting development.
“Our ambitious plans for the future of Redcar involve us attracting an extra million visitors each year by 2025. The ‘vertical pier’ project is integral to that vision and I am very much looking forward to seeing the suggestions put forward.”