Today we’re releasing the second of the ideas for the Castle Gateway area. In order to make the new public space on what is currently Castle Car Park possible, many people said that we needed to address city centre car parking.
In the Open Brief we summarized this as:
- See car traffic and parking dealt with in ways which do not conflict with these other uses
- Sit down and enjoy the views in lots of different places in the area, including views of the Ouse and the Foss
- It was also mentioned by many people when we asked them what mattered to them about areas was that the conflence of the two rivers has long been a place of arrival and connection to the world.
This was also very much emphasized in responses to emergening ideas at the end of last year, as we noted in our report:of the two suggested alternative locations, St.George’s Field (Site SGF1) was greatly preferred over Castle Mills (Site P3). Reasons varied, from feelings that St.George’s Field was further out from sensitive historic sites and hence had less impact, to the fact that traffic access to Piccadilly was seen as more problematic (as Castle Mills is inside the inner ring road, whereas St. George’s Field is outside it).
This illustration shows what a multi-storey car park at St George’s Field could offer – good, quality, modern, secure parking for cars and coaches. The car park would be designed to keep the views of Clifford’s Tower from New Walk and along Tower Street. A raised access road would allow upper floors to be used during flooding. It could also make more of the building, providing a new arrival point and viewing platform to enjoy our city centre.
Although the sketch is just an idea of what it could look like, it shows how good design – and features like a green wall – could be used to make a feature car park appropriate to its surroundings.
As with all the ideas here, this illustration is to indicate one possible future. It’s a culmination of lots of conversations, debates and discussions but it is not the end. If the plan is passed by the council executive in April, we’ll be wanting to talk more, with any and all interested, about what makes for a good multi-storey car park – as well as explore what new possibilities for public space, cycling and pedestrian movement are opened up by having car parking located on St George’s Field.