Page last updated at 19:34 GMT, Tuesday, 9 September 2008 20:34 UK

Bognor's 500m plans 'on course'

Chichester University campus (picture from Arun District Council
Student numbers at the University of Chichester could more than double

Plans that could see 500m invested in a West Sussex seaside town are still on course despite the current economic climate, the district council says.

Consultations with developers and site owners on various regeneration schemes planned for Bognor Regis have been encouraging, Arun council said.

"People have every reason to be excited and optimistic about the programme," said Councillor Norman Dingemans.

A public meeting about the regeneration plans is to be held on 8 October.

The council's Bognor Regis subcommittee received a report on the impact of the economic downturn on the town's regeneration on Monday.

The public meeting was also announced.

Mr Dingemans said the aim of the meeting, at the Butlins Shoreline conference centre, was to give the public a "full and frank" progress report on the various schemes.

KEY DEVELOPMENT SITES
Lec Refrigeration - Earmarked for retail or small business use
University of Chichester - Expansion of Bognor campus
Butlins - Modernisation of resort and opening of spa hotel
Regis Centre - Leisure, homes and redesigned promenade

"This meeting will be important to demonstrate how plans for the town's regeneration are still moving positively forward," he said.

"It will be the only definitive and factual report of the programme's progress as it will be delivered by the development partners themselves."

The developers of the Lec and Regis sites, the owners of Butlins, the University of Chichester and West Sussex County Council have all promised to be at the meeting.

Berkeley Homes, which has been granted planning permission for 650 homes at Bersted, has also been invited but has not yet confirmed if it will attend.

"Along with the council, these partners will form the panel to which those attending can address their questions and comments about the regeneration programme," said Mr Dingemans.

"The meeting will allow for comments, opinions and questions but in a way that ensures fairness, courtesy and respect for differing opinions.

"We have deliberately chosen a large venue in the hope that the people of Bognor Regis and Arun will come along to hear about our innovative plans and to give their views."


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