A VISION for the future of Burnley town centre which council bosses hope will create more than 1,000 new jobs has been unveiled.

Burnley Council has published its town centre masterplan ahead of a public consultation, which is to be launched following an executive meeting next week.

Over the life of the masterplan, to 2032, council bosses hope if the proposals included in the masterplan come to fruition, it will create1,070 new jobs and bring in £100m gross value added per year, as well as more than £1m in new business rates.

The plan also includes a suggestion of 583 new homes at various town centre sites.

Earlier this year, the council announced plans for a major new retail and leisure development on the former Pioneer site in Curzon Street with Reel Cinema due to move there, as well as a 125-space car park, restaurants, shops and a public plaza.

In a report to go before the executive, head of regeneration and planning policy, Kate Ingram, said: "The plan identifies a number of intervention areas and projects where investment could have a transformational impact.

"Short to medium term proposals include the redevelopment of the Curzon Street site for leisure/retail and further development around

Sandygate to provide student accommodation to support UCLAN’s growth proposals.

"Longer term schemes include further residential development including conversion of offices in the Victorian Quarter and new-build and conversions along the canalside.

"Proposals for the canalside area incorporating the former George Street Mill and King Street Car Park sites include scope for the future expansion of the university to accommodate both academic space and student accommodation.

"New grade A office accommodation, subject to demand, is proposed on the former Thompson Centre site,

alongside a Youth Zone on Croft Street.

"The masterplan also proposes further investment in public realm, with specific proposals for Curzon Street and Todmorden Road to create link between the town centre and the football club subject to securing external funding."

Burnley Council leader, Cllr Mark Townsend said: “We have completed the improvements to the pedestrianised area, and the private sector has invested with new openings and improvements to shop frontages. But this was just the start. The masterplan needs to build on that.

“Some people may ask: ‘why keep spending money on the town centre? Why is that a priority?’ My answer is that the town centre is an engine of growth for the local economy. Many town centres are struggling; Burnley’s is growing. I want that to continue.

“But it’s not all about the economy and jobs. A brilliant town centre is also good for local pride. When I walk through town today, I feel a buzz about the place that wasn’t there 10 years ago. This plan is about making sure that in 10 years from now, even more people are enjoying it.”

Asif Raja, executive member for economy and growth added: “This isn’t pie in the sky. Burnley Football Club, the University of Central Lancashire, and the County Council are right behind the plan.

"A lot of what we want to achieve is possible because the council owns the land. The council’s job is to bring together investment from the council, the wider public sector, and business, so we can deliver aspects of the masterplan in the very near future.

“Other proposals in the masterplan are more aspirational. Nevertheless, we need to plan for all the changes we want to see in the town centre, so that if and when funding becomes available, we can target those resources at schemes that are part of a coherent plan.

"We want local businesses and residents to give us their views, so that the whole borough can get behind the changes that are coming.”

Following a tender process in summer last year, Burnley Council appointed BDP an international practice of architects, planners and urbanists, together with commercial property specialists BE Group and transport planners Urban Flow to develop the masterplan for the town centre and canalside areas.

The work has been jointly funded by Burnley Council, Homes England, One Public Estate and Burnley FC, with the project overseen by a steering group including Burnley Council, UCLAN, Burnley FC and Lancashire County Council.

If approved, the consultation will run from September 19 until October 22.