Lowestoft car park to be demolished while future development of site remains uncertain
PUBLISHED: 09:05 10 November 2017 | UPDATED: 08:54 13 November 2017
The long-awaited demolition of a Lowestoft car park will soon begin, however plans for the site’s future are still unknown.
Contractors will begin the destruction of Battery Green Car Park on Monday, November 13.
Graham Catchpole, Waveney District Council’s (WDC) cabinet member for partnerships and operational services, gave an indication of the current time scale surrounding the project.
He said: “There is a 13-week contract for the completion of the work, however the contractors are confident the majority of the works will be completed by the end of December.
“A ground level surface car park will be ready for use early in the New Year.”
The councillor could not provide concrete plans for the future development of the site.
Mr Catchpole said: “Waveney continues to develop its ideas over the longer term use of the site as a leisure and retail hub to support the existing town centre.”
Tracy Metcalfe, manager of Wilko, which is attached to the car park, says she is pleased action is finally being taken.
She said: “In the customer’s eyes it will look like progress so I am happy the council are now doing something. Plus, the new ground level car park can only be a positive as it gives us back some parking spaces.”
WDC announced the closure of the car park in December 2016, with the facility finally closing on March 31 this year.
Mrs Metcalfe feels trade in the town centre has suffered since the closure.
She said: “I have spoken with other shops and sales are down as it has impacted the town’s footfall.
“Customers can’t get in as the car parks we currently have are not always accessible.”
Danny Steel, chairman of Lowestoft Vision, believes the site’s prime location and proximity to the town centre should be capitalised on.
He said: “From a Vision perspective we want something which will encourage people to visit the town centre, for example a shopping mall or cinema.
“The ground level car park will be useful but I wouldn’t like to see a temporary car park become a permanent car park on a site so close to the town centre.”
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