MILLIONS of pounds of regeneration investment has been earmarked for Bodmin in the coming years with residents given the opportunity to shape the town's future.
Cornwall Council is holding a public exhibition on Saturday at the Shire House Suite from 10am to 4pm so that locals can view the proposals and give their feedback.
Plans have been developed by Cornwall Council that identify proposed locations for 3,000 new houses in the Bodmin area, its future commercial growth, proposed new infrastructure, as well as setting out the wider vision for the town.
Proposals include creating a new road through Priory Park from St Nicholas Street to Priory Road, making the town centre a traffic-free zone, plus other changes to the road network in Bodmin.
According to figures contained in the local authority's infrastructure needs assessment for Bodmin, the cost of alterations to the road network will cost £13.6 million, which incudes the new link road through Priory Park (£4.6 million) and alterations to junctions along Priory Road and Launceston Road (£7.6 million).
Removing the roundabout at Church Square and closing off Turf Street to traffic is estimated to cost £294,000.
Council officers will be available on Saturday to take any questions about the Town Framework that sets out the proposed future strategy for the growth of Bodmin.
Bodmin chamber of commerce chairman Chris Wilkes said it was vital that traders and shoppers attend the exhibition and give their views on what is proposed.
Mr Wilkes said he could see many benefits, but also drawbacks to some of the plans, particularly regarding pedestrianising Fore Street, and wanted town traders to engage in the consultation process.
"As they stand, the proposals would mean delivery lorries coming to Fore Street via Crockwell Street, and I doubt very much whether a large articulated lorry would be able to turn right at that junction, so that has to be looked at.
"But overall, this is a major opportunity for Bodmin. Cornwall Council seems very keen to do its best for the town at long last.
"We certainly seem to have the ear of County Hall, and I would urge everyone, particularly town traders and their customers to come to the public exhibition and embrace what is proposed and to give Cornwall Council their feedback – this is Bodmin's best chance for many years to get funding to make root and branch improvements to the town."
The event will be held to get the views of local residents on the emerging proposals as the Town Framework goes out to public consultation from Monday, March 11 through to Monday, April 22.
The Town Framework is available to look at on the council's website at www.cornwall.gov.uk/bodmintf and copies are also available to view at Bodmin Library.
A Cornwall Council spokesperson said: "This represents an important time in shaping the future of Bodmin, so feedback on the proposals from local residents, as well offering any other thoughts or ideas, will be very valuable."