Local democracy during coronavirus

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Agenda item

City Centre Projects Update


City centre projects update - Andy Kerr, CYC regeneration Presentation


Covid response - re-opening of the city centre aimed at making it economically viable. Outdoor seating provided to aid social distancing, the council has worked with Make it York and The Bid.  There is a range of seating & tables not business-specific that are free to use; positive feedback has been received.  Parliament Street is now moving to a more commercial offering, and outdoor seating will stay until September.


My City Centre – The aim of the project is to:  Engage the public and stakeholders to develop a long term social, environmental and economic strategic vision for a sustainable future for the city centre. 

The council is working with public and stakeholders, the project started in 2020, paused in April 2020 and restarted May 2021 to drive the Covid response. The stakeholder group have helped shape the engagement and have responded using the online map with thumbs up and down and Facebook Q&A.  There is an emerging vision – A city centre everyone wants to be part of.

Outcomes of the consultation

      More family-friendly city centre

      More resident focus to our events and spreading them out across the city

      Encouraging more families in to the city centre after 5pm in the week

      Improving the markets

      Acknowledge the importance of tourism but how we can make sure residents benefit

      Making the most of our rivers

There will be a public consultation late August/September, November for executive approval.  There will be an action plan developed with Make it York and The Bid.


Review of access and parking – the aim is to improve access for all, the review has been commissioned in response to the decision to make the foot streets permanent. It will create a hierarchy of council car parks to decide future priorities.

It will cover disabled access, deliveries, Taxis, cycling and footpaths.  The draft vision will be put out for consultation Aug/Sept – November for approval.  There will be a decision at this point as to whether the new foot streets will become permanent.


Castle Gateway – Castle Mills and riverside park will include 106 apartments, commercial spaces, pedestrian cycle bridge over the River Foss, new public riverside park behind the Castle Museum (which has been behind a pay wall), pedestrian/cycle crossing point over the inner ring road. The sale of the apartments will fund the new multi-storey car park. Castle Mills projected to start early 2022


St Georges Field multi-storey car park.  This will consolidate parking on St Georges Field and provide 372 parking spaces, 25 coach spaces - this enables the closure of the Castle car park and offsets lost revenue. Projected start date Spring 2022, for an Autumn 2023 completion.


Castle and the Eye of York – A new world-class public realm to replace the Castle car park. Will provide year-round event space in the area. Planning needs to be submitted this summer for the shovel ready project. £3.5m West Yorkshire Transport funding has been secured and this is part of the council’s Levelling Up bid to improve the whole city centre. Start Autumn 2023, post completion of MSCP. Projection at this point to be completed Autumn 2024.


Riverside walkway

An explanation was given of the various riverside proposals including improving routes along the river and footbridges across the rivers.


      Bridge to be considered as part of Local Transport Plan 4 to understand if the strategic business case means it is an investment or funding priority

      Continue to work with Helmsley Group to shape their proposals for the emerging Riverside Quarter

      Await the outcome of the Levelling Up Funding bid for the public sector match funding



Andy Kerr summed up with the key points to deliver the Riverside walkway, reinvest in Parliament St, and improve accessibility in the city centre.


Cllr Looker asked in relation to the public space at Clifford’s Tower if there is a fountain in the plans.  Andy Kerr confirmed that a ground level water feature is included.


Michael Reakes said that he was pleased to see that the riverside is a priority, increasing paths along the river Foss would be very nice. He also asked that it be noted that with regard to accessibility into city from Scarborough direction, it would be very useful if the Park and Ride buses dropped off at the hospital for appointments.


Cllr Fitzpatrick said that the Riverside Quarter exists already and that they have had their first meeting which she attended.  The group are concerned that the Riverside Quarter includes Coney St.  She went to the Clifford’s Tower meeting for a look around, she can see that there is funding coming to Tower Gardens. She enquired as to where the money funding came from.

Andy Kerr responded that new benches have gone in as part of the funding, he will check how much funding is left and will come back on that.


Gwen Swinburn stated that following the citizens audit £10,000 had been spent and at least £10,000 is still available.  She raised the issue of the trees being a cause for concern in Parliament Street.  This was supported by several attendees to the meeting.

Andy Kerr stated that the Levelling Up fund is available to all Local authorities to apply for, whilst there is a high level of competition he believes a strong bid has been submitted.  Parliament St is at the forefront of the thinking. If the purpose of and how Parliament St will look in the future can be defined, then the council will know whether the trees will contribute to that future and can act accordingly.  He acknowledged that the tree roots are affecting the pavements and buildings.




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