Council buys up properties for next phase of Blackpool town centre masterplan
Regeneration chiefs are buying up properties in Blackpool town centre as part of a strategy to provide additional car parking spaces which could be used by potential future office workers.
The council has bought commercial buildings at 2 Charles Street, 1 to 3 Milbourne Street, and at 8 and 27 to 29 King Street.
The area is on the edge of further phases of the Talbot Gateway masterplan area which are designated for future office development.
Purchase prices have not been disclosed, but in February councillors approved a £16m cash injection to deliver more than 2,000 additional car parking spaces in the town centre, with the cash coming from its capital budget.
Council reports setting out the reasons behind the latest acquisitions say the move will "consolidate its existing land holdings and create new development opportunity linked to the town centre car parking strategy".
Negotiations have been carried out by the council's growth and prosperity team and all the properties are empty.
The report adds: "Once other assets have been acquired to unlock the future development potential of the surrounding area, it is intended to produce a regeneration scheme, demolish and/or redevelop the properties.
"Until such time that the property is required for regeneration it is intended to keep the property vacant and secure."
In its car parking strategy, published in February, the council said it was "looking to bring forward more office-based developments through
relocation or inward investment into the town centre as part of the Talbot Gateway masterplan."
It was estimated around 750 parking spaces would be required as part of phases two and three of the Talbot Gateway.
Plans to move thousands of civil service workers into Blackpool town centre were backed by an influential group of Lords earlier this month.
Talks have been taking place that could see multiple departments, including the Ministry of Defence and the Department for Work and Pensions, share a civil service hub in the resort.