Grays growth

Town centre and station quarter

The opening of the South Essex College and the proposed development around the station and underpass will shift the centre of gravity in Grays town centre to the south.

The town centre and station quarter contains:

  • Grays Shopping Centre
  • Morrisons supermarket
  • the State Cinema
  • the railway and bus stations
  • South Essex College
  • Civic Offices

The proposed underpass at the station and associated mixed use development offer a major opportunity for Grays. Two new gateway spaces at the station will offer a welcoming arrival experience and help enhance the image of Grays.

The underpass creates a seamless connection. New shops, cafés and restaurants will create an attractive focus around the station for residents, commuters, visitors and students. An extension to the Civic Offices in New Road will complete the Grays South Project, providing enhanced public spaces and coordinated public services.

In February 2017, the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) confirmed the award of a £10.8 million Local Growth Fund grant to support the creation of the underpass and public squares. We are working with Network Rail and c2c to agree arrangements. There will be public consultation on the next design stage, which will start later in 2018.

Uses:

  • core shopping area
  • convenience shops and services around the station
  • higher quality food store
  • restaurants overlooking Grays Church
  • revival of the State Cinema as a Wetherspoon pub
  • encourage longer opening times
  • enhanced street market with expanded offer
  • public services

Heights, layout and built form:

  • heights of 4 to 5 storeys overlooking the public spaces
  • development should respond sensitively to listed building and their setting, most notably to the Grade II listed Grays Parish Church and the State Cinema

Transport and movement:

  • creation of new underpass to conveniently link both parts of the High Street
  • better bus rail interchange
  • better cycling facilities
  • improved access to town centre car parks

Public realm and open spaces:

  • a series of linked public spaces from the war memorial, two squares with the underpass, the square at the College, and the space by Grays Wharf
  • enhancement to the public realm throughout the town centre

Development opportunities:

  • mixed use developments on either side of the station to facilitate the development of the underpass and associated public spaces
  • potential to redevelop the former Post Office building on George Street
  • mixed use development at the corner of the High Street and New Road
  • mixed use development on the site to the south of Grays Parish Church