A flourishing and vibrant city Bath boasts some of the finest Roman remains in Europe, superb Georgian architecture and extensive shopping of excellent quality. The city is a frequent winner of the 'Britain in Bloom' competition. It has two universities, a College of Further Education and a wide variety of sporting facilities.
The Univesity of Bath is renowned not only for its academic excellence, but is achieving international fame for providing outstanding training facilities for professional sportsmen and women. Team Bath member, Jason Gardener, was made an Honorary Freeman of the City following his gold medal at the 2004 Olympic Games.
The City of Bath has implemented a number of projects for the 21st Century, four of which are detailed below.
Every day, over a million litres of hot mineral rich water rise from three springs in the heart of Bath. From pre-Roman times until the old spa closed in 1978, people from all over the world enjoyed the special properties of this unique resource for healing, relaxation and leisure.
A lottery-funded project came to fruition in 2006 to combine the restoration of historic buildings with a new state-of-the-art leisure spa. The new building, in glass and Bath stone, has been designed to match the quality of the City's unique architectural heritage. The project included the restoration of five important historic buildings and is the only place in the UK where people can bathe in natural, hot spring water.
Thermae Bath Spa offers traditional and complementary treatments using steam rooms, indoor and outdoor thermal pools, whirl pools, water jets, airbeds, and massage rooms, making Bath an international focal point for natural health and well-being.
Pedestrianisation of the City Centre
For many years, the centre of Bath has been clogged with traffic. The pollution levels were high and pedestrians, particularly tourists, found it difficult to get around the centre.
In 2001, the 'Bus Gate' was introduced. The scheme involved the installation of a set of traffic lights outside the Guildhall, which only allowed City Centre access to public service vehicles. After a year's trial, the scheme was judged to be a success and was installed permanently in 2002.
Redevelopment of Southgate
Southgate used to comprise a shopping centre, bus station and multi-story car park was built in the 1960s andwas considered to be out of keeping with the style of the City.
The new SouthGate, Bath is not an enclosed shopping centre of the past. It's a modern shopping destination, with classic Georgian-style open streets and public spaces. It's located within the city of Bath, next to Bath Spa Railway Station and the new bus station. It also has a new 860 space car park.
SouthGate Bath will have over 55 new and exciting stores, which opened in 3 phases. Phase 1 opened on 4th November 2009, and phase 2 opened in May 2010. The final phase opened in September 2010, including the new 125,000 sq ft Debenhams department store.
Little SouthGate opened October 2010. Discover a new, exciting and constantly evolving shopping experience at Little SouthGate. The stunning new indoor arcade is situated right in the heart of SouthGate, Bath and has 13 unique fashion and lifestyle boutiques.
Redevelopment of Riverside
On the south western side of the River Avon, it is proposed to redevelop the vacant areas to provide leisure facilities, housing, administrative areas and light industry for the rapidly expanding business prospects of the City.