Focus on Fort William – Special public engagement event to mark FW2040 - One Year On
Details have been announced of a major public exhibition where members of the public are being invited to review and help update a masterplan for the future of Fort William and the wider Lochaber area. One year on from the first Fort William 2040 #FW2040 consultation held in September 2018, where the FW2040 Masterplan was developed, the public are being invited to the Nevis Centre on Wednesday 25th September to help review progress and steer the delivery of their vision for the town.
The public exhibition runs from 2pm - 7.30pm and includes a series of workshops where people can discuss the delivery of different aspects of the community’s vision for the future. Participants will be asked to review progress made over the last year, and to give their views on the next stages of the masterplan.
Councillor Allan Henderson, chair of The Highland Council’s Environment, Development and Infrastructure Committee said “The FW2040 Masterplan and Delivery Programme which people helped prepare last year is acting as the joint portfolio for the future of the town. This exhibition will allow the public to speak to people involved in delivering that vision. Significant progress has been made in delivering developments over the last year and we want to continue the momentum to deliver other services and infrastructure over the next few years, including major new employment opportunities, a new hospital and educational facilities.”
During last year’s FW2040 consultation participants highlighted three key priorities for the future:
- A Great Place to Live
- A Connected Place
- A Place Facing Water
A fourth priority - A Place with Collective Ambition – highlighted the willingness of local people to work together for the future of the area. One year on from the initial FW2040 consultation event, the event will provide a platform for all those working for the future of the town to come together and review progress on delivering the community’s vision. Arrangements for the event are being made by The Highland Council, in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise and The Scottish Government.
Representatives of all the existing and aspirational projects in the town are being given space to exhibit the plans they are working on and answer any questions.
HIE Programme Manager Alastair Nicolson said: “This is a really exciting opportunity for the people of Fort William and Lochaber. It will provide an opportunity for the public to see the collective effort that is underway to deliver the vision in the masterplan and to steer the next stages. We very much look forward to welcoming people on the day. Their input will help shape priorities for the year ahead.”
The exhibition will take place from 2pm to 7.30pm on 25 September 2019 in the Nevis Centre with workshops also being held where people can find out more about particular projects at the following times:
- 2:30pm - A Great Place to Live
- 4:00pm - A Connected Place
- 5:30pm - A Place Facing Water
- 7:00pm - Wrap up
Councillor Allan Henderson hopes as many people as possible take up this opportunity to get involved. He added: “FW2040 is about local communities, businesses, landowners and potential investors collaborating to create and deliver the type of place people want Fort William to be. This collaborative approach allows everyone to play their part and will help ensure that the town and the wider Lochaber area can fulfil its enormous potential. The results of the event will help feed into an updated version of the FW2040 Masterplan so it is important that the ideas and feedback from individuals and community groups are captured at this stage.”
To coincide with the FW2040 engagement event the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Michael Matheson MSP, will be meeting with representatives from the Lochaber Chamber of Commerce to discuss their aspirations.