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Visually impaired shoppers shape Bromley town centre redevelopment
A SHOPPING trip with a guide dog has helped shape the design of the £5m Bromley North Village improvement scheme.
Kent Association for the Blind representatives took Councillor Peter Morgan around the town centre so he could learn about the challenges shoppers with visual impairments face.
As a result the design now includes a more textured paving material to help blind people find their way around more easily.
The outline designs have been approved by councillors at meeting of the renewal and recreation policy development and scrutiny committee.
Portfolio holder for renewal and recreation Cllr Morgan said: “The improvements to Bromley North Village will encourage more visitors to shop and spend leisure time in this part of the town and this will support the local economy.
“We have listened very carefully to all the comments we received and have improved the plans as a result.
“We were pleased to draw upon the specialist expertise that Kent Association for the Blind have and they were able to show us in practical ways the everyday challenges that people with visual impairments have when visiting town centres.”
The scheme encompasses Market Square, High Street North and East Street in Bromley town centre.
Bromley Council hopes the planned changes will make the area more pedestrian friendly and attract independent businesses and specialist retailers.
A public consultation process ran from October to December last year.
Because of comments received the council changed the proposed yellow paving to a granite York stone and made the direction signs and panels more in keeping with the area’s heritage.
Go to bromley.gov.uk/bromleynorthvillage to see the consultation documents.