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Cornhill development in Ipswich gets the green light - but it will cost £400,000 more

PUBLISHED: 21:20 12 December 2017 | UPDATED: 21:45 12 December 2017

Architects' impression of the new look for Ipswich Cornhill

Architects' impression of the new look for Ipswich Cornhill

Archant

Controversial plans to revamp the Cornhill in Ipswich have been given the green light - on the basis the council can find a partner to match the extra £200,000 it is investing in the project.

Architects' impression of the new look for Ipswich CornhillArchitects' impression of the new look for Ipswich Cornhill

A contractor will soon be given the go ahead to take on the £3.6 million development following a meeting of the Ipswich Borough Council executive tonight.

However, the council will first look into whether it can still afford certain features within the plans, such as the Cornhill’s new water feature.

Due to inflation and increased building costs, the project is now set to cost £400,000 more than initially thought.

To combat this, the council has agreed to set aside a further £200,000 towards the development, however this is subject to at least one partner matching this increased contribution.

Work is set to begin at the Cornhill at the end of January and is expected to be completed in October, in time for Christmas and University of Suffolk graduations.

The new-look Cornhill is set to feature a main plinth, green granite tiled slabs and four striking ‘celebratory columns’ inspired by the four figures on top of the Town Hall and former Post Office.

Ambient lighting, benches and trees will also be installed as part of the revamp.

There will also be space created for market stalls, although these are set to stretch around Giles Circus and Queen Street.

Terry Hunt, Ipswich Vision chairman, said he hoped the council would find a way to retain the Cornhill’s planned water feature.

He said: “I’m delighted that this hugely important project for Ipswich will go ahead early in 2018. The Cornhill improvement is a vital step in the renaissance of Suffolk’s county town.

“Currently, the Cornhill falls into the category of ‘it’ll do.’

“The Ipswich Vision partners feel very strongly that ‘it’ll do’ is nowhere good enough for Ipswich.

“We want our town to be brilliant, and the Cornhill is the most prominent and most important public space in Ipswich.

“I very much hope that a way can be found to retain the water feature, which is an important element of the overall scheme.

“I look forward to work getting underway very soon, and our super new-look Cornhill being ready before next Christmas.”

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