A COUNCIL is consulting the public on a £150m project.

Plans to revitalise Station Approach around Winchester railway station are now under way following a cabinet meeting.

The Winchester City Council development will provide a commercial and residential area to reinvigorate the city’s economy while pursuing net-zero targets.

Speaking to cabinet, Councillor Martin Tod, leader of the council said: "It’s a really important project for our city and the district, it’s a real opportunity to improve things in that area of our city.

"It is a project that needs to be rebooted because since we last ran the Station Approach project a lot has changed.

"Covid has happened and had a huge impact on work and travel patterns, we see it with traffic and trains.

"We have this new opportunity of talking to Network Rail and other partners to take a wider view than we were able to before.

"I wanted to start this project in a new way – with a strong program of listening to make sure we’ve heard people’s views and we understand what’s important to them."

Cllr Malcolm Wallace added: "The Station Approach and the regeneration project represents a fantastic opportunity for Winchester to position itself as a green city.

"On transport data shows that 60 per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the Winchester district are currently produced by transport.

"Station Approach is right at the heart of Winchester in a great location for walking and cycling – overall the Station Approach represents a great opportunity for eliminating car usage."

The project timeline will start with public consultation and a capacity study over the summer and autumn.

It’s hoped that a planning application and a development partner will be prepared by 2025.

However, local resident Imogen Dawson opposed the scheme in a deputation to cabinet members.

"The situation now and possibly for years to come is far from normal, a period of huge instability here and across the world which is affecting our pattern of life," she said.

"Covid, the cost of living crisis, inflation, rising fuel costs, debt, the increasing effects of climate change and of course the war in Ukraine.

"Given all these factors I would urge that the council hit the pause button now as even data being collected this year will not be fit for purpose as it won’t reflect the new normal."