Work has started on £5.2m-worth of public area improvements to Plymouth's historic Royal William Yard.
Work on the improvements should be completed by April 2005
The work, which started on Monday, will include resurfacing the road, pavements and dockside with granite, and installing street furniture.
A 1.1 metre-high glazed flood protection balustrade along the waterfront will also be installed.
The site is being developed by the South West Regional Development Agency (RDA) and developers Urban Splash.
The site was once described by Jonathan Coade, an authority on British naval architecture, as "one of the finest groups of buildings ever constructed to serve the Royal Navy".
When work is finished, the site will be transformed into 130 one and two-bedroom apartments, with a waterfront restaurant, shops, a wine bar, and an arts and exhibition centre.
Carl Budden, development manager for the RDA, said: "In some ways, the external spaces within the yard are as important as the buildings themselves.
"This investment is therefore vital to the regeneration of the yard and will help our development partners breathe new life into this unique and wonderful site."
Work on the improvements should be completed by April 2005.