Perhaps the most popular idea of all the discussions we had was to being able to walk and cycle up the Foss into York. In the Open Brief we developed last summer people said they wanted to:
- Enjoy the Foss and the Ouse. To be able to walk and cycle up the Foss and the Ouse into town, to be able to sit
- and see the Foss and appreciate its wildlife.
- Walk or cycle up from the Foss Basin into town and beyond, with continuous, safe, and (preferably) traffic-free routes
- Use boats – barges and canoes – on the Foss
- See the Foss. Reverse the current situation where the town turns its back on the Foss, and recognise the value that water has in an urban setting.
This was also reflected in responses to the masterplan ideas shared in November and December 2017:
As part of the Riverside Walk a new park area would link to a pedestrian cycle bridge over the River Foss; the semi-circular design would provide a route around the narrow section at the rear corner of the museum, and link through to Piccadilly.
These are very much part of emerging plans for the Castle Museum and you can read more about their current thinking in an interview with Reyahn King, Chief Executive, York Museums Trust.
The bridge would land on the council-owned Castle Mills site, meaning delivering this part of the proposals is in control of the council and York Museums Trust. The rest of the Castle Mills site would be turned in to a new apartment building, with commercial uses at ground floor level, as part of the vision to turn Piccadilly into a vibrant city-living neighbourhood.
As with all the ideas, this illustration just evokes 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 how to develop the River Walkway.