Our idea is to transform the Ralla from unused, inaccessible and unloved into to a high quality community asset and to maximise the potential of Kirkdale’s canal frontage, using both as a catalyst for wider regeneration in the Flowers and Orwell Road areas.
Following Mayor Anderson’s announcement to bring a new city Park to Kirkdale and the Ralla our ideas include new and improved homes, shops and cafes, a new park with its own eco-centre, a world class boxing academy plus a new retirement village for Kirkdale residents.
The boxing academy, supported by the local Smith family, will offer inter-connected community uses such as a gym, fitness studio and leisure facilities.
Our ideas also include a new café and enterprise space, too, in which local businesses could establish themselves and flourish.
And we’ll seek to integrate both Kirkdale, Bank Hall and Sandhills stations in to the project, as well as improving cycle and pedestrian access, to make it accessible and easier for visitors to share our neighbourhood with us.
The ambition goes further, too: to use the project as a catalyst for improvements to the ‘flower streets’ and the wider Orwell Road areas. Our ideas are to look at ways in which we can regenerate these existing communities and link them to any new development, with better crossings and landscaping on Commercial Road.
All of this is backed up by our promise to use local suppliers, wherever practicable, to help us build the scheme whilst providing local youngsters with training opportunities and new skills.
Both the Ralla and the canal banks are home to some wildlife, but because they are uncared-for there’s much less than you think.
We want to change that.
Our initial ideas include an eco habitat to maximise the site’s potential to attract insects, birdlife and wildlife and new trails for local people and study areas for our local children to learn more about how city life and Mother Nature can go hand in hand.
Our ideas will include opening the Ralla to the public, a place for new parkland and planting together with new community facilities – land that local people have never been allowed to enjoy.
What would you like to see in the new park? Let us know by completing the online survey.
Our team includes the Smith family – Britain’s most successful boxing family who were born and raised overlooking the Ralla.
Between them Paul, Stephen, Liam and Callum were the first four siblings to be crowned British champions and have two world belts to their name, too.
Team Smith’s knowledge of training and nutrition as well as their deep professional links and relationships will be at the core of a new boxing academy designed to teach local youngsters how to care for mind, body and soul in a competitive sporting environment.
And with their strong commercial links they can bring the very best of everything to bear for local young people, from equipment and sportswear to guest trainers and lecturers.
The ambition is to develop a community hub based around the principles and disciplines of this great sport to give other north Liverpool youngsters the opportunities that the Smith family have enjoyed in a safe, welcoming and structured environment.
High quality homes for local people are a key element of our ambitions for the canal-side, the Ralla, the Flowers and Orwell Road areas.
We have seen elsewhere in Kirkdale how new homes and high-quality landscaping can transform the look and feel of the area and we want more local people to benefit from this.
Our ideas for new and improved homes increase opportunities for people to find the right type of affordable accommodation for themselves or loved ones and they encourage wider investment in the surrounding area – another way to bring about improvements to the flowers and Orwell Road area. This could create jobs, more physical improvements and more choice.
Our initial ideas include a range of home types, with options to rent, buy or for shared ownership – and all at affordable prices, too.
What type of homes would you like to see us deliver? Let us know.
Success will, quite literally, be designed into our project.
We would like the park and the different built elements of our project will be of the highest quality. Our ideas will see any new development knit together with neighbouring streets to make it feel a natural part of Kirkdale and so that the regeneration benefits flow to neighbouring streets, too.
And we’ll provide a team to ensure that the development’s management and security will deliver a place where people will be proud to live, work and play.
Other ideas include space for dog walkers, joggers and cyclists and a special children’s play area and a small outdoor performance space.
We envisage room for small scale, innovative urban farming too, should that prove to be feasible. Our ideas will seek to improve access to the canal bank and enhance its setting, too. As a result, we believe Kirkdale Canalside will become a destination in its own right, with obvious gains for the community hub that sits at the heart of our thinking.
When people have been born and brought up in an area like Kirkdale the chances are they want to remain there.
But that can be difficult when homes haven’t been designed for later years. Unsuitable accommodation can become a physical, emotional and financial burden.
Our ideas may provide a solution to that in Kirkdale by delivering purpose-designed housing for local elderly folk so that they can live securely amongst family, friends and neighbours without having to leave the neighbourhood they love.
If our plans gain support and approval we’d work with specialist local agencies to ensure that the very best is delivered to people who deserve nothing less.
These are our early ideas, but we know you can help improve them.
What do you think we could include to make these ideas work better for this part of Kirkdale, the people and the local area?
We’ll do our best to include your suggestions in our plans as they emerge and unfold through our discussions with Liverpool Council and we’ll return at a future date to share proposals with you.
Here’s another challenge: how can we use this process to generate ideas to improve the wider neighbourhood?
We know by improving landscaping, the environment and things like pedestrian crossings that we can create a better place. But are there other opportunities or ideas that may help?
We know we can’t transform all of this part of Kirkdale in one go, but with major steps forward like this we can encourage others to join us. Block by block this part of Kirkdale can be made great again – a thriving, bustling neighbourhood where people want to live, work and play.
Let us know what else you think is possible.