Cabinet will consider introducing a new Town Centre Maintenance Grant to help traders and landlords improve the fronts of town centre properties.
The Council’s proposed scheme is intended to have a positive impact on the street scene to create more attractive and vibrant town centre environments – in turn encouraging private sector investment in the high street.
Cabinet Members will consider the proposal at their meeting on Tuesday, September 19, and they could agree to a one-year pilot through a £50,000 investment by the Council.
The scheme would initially be piloted in the Mountain Ash and Tonypandy Retail Areas, before potentially being rolled out across all town centres in Rhondda Cynon Taf.
The scheme would allow traders and landlords, including those of vacant properties, to carry out minor improvement and maintenance works – including painting, powder coating on shutters and a range of repairs.
Works would have to be carried out by a reputable contractor, and the scheme would contribute a maximum of 75% towards eligible costs – with a maximum grant of £1,000. A further grant of up to £300 (75% maximum contribution) may also be available where scaffolding or skip hire is required to carry out the work.
If agreed, there would be an open call for town centre applicants within Tonypandy and Mountain Ash with no deadline, and each application would be assessed on a first-come first-served basis. Applications would be limited to one per property.
Councillor Robert Bevan, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Enterprise, Development and Housing, said: “Cabinet will consider the Town Centre Maintenance Grant at their next meeting and, if agreed, a pilot scheme would be started in Mountain Ash and Tonypandy, to inform a decision on whether the scheme should be extended.
“Delivering town centre improvement is a priority for this Council, and a range of initiatives are already underway to promote this.
“Earlier this year, the Council introduced free parking in Tonypandy, Porth and Mountain Ash, and lowered charges in Aberdare and Pontypridd – to encourage more visitors to town centres. Meanwhile, the Council has made public plans to review vehicle and pedestrian movement in Tonypandy town centre, following representations by local councillors, residents and traders.
“If agreed, the £50,000 Council investment for the Town Centre Maintenance Grant will put the wheels in motion for the scheme, which could in the future be rolled out to other town centres.”
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