Council spending £600k on new Blackpool town centre car park

Town hall bosses have revealed they will borrow £600,000 to demolish former council offices and create a bigger town centre car park.

By Shelagh Parkinson
Friday, 5th August 2022, 4:29 pm

As previously reported, the council is planning to demolish the former register office on South King Street and offices on Albert Road as part of a scheme which will create a 152-space car park.

A new report shows the cost of the project will be £600,000, but the development will save £160,000 in annual running costs for the buildings, as well as bringing in additional parking revenue.

The scheme, for which planning permission is being sought for a temporary three year period, will also provide additional parking for both the nearby Winter Gardens conference centre and the Houndshill Shopping Centre.

Blackpool's old register office is among buildings due to be demolished to make way for the car park

The report says: "The close proximity of the South King Street site to both Houndshill and the new conference centre presents an ideal opportunity to expand the existing surface car park".

The register office relocated to the Wedding Chapel on the Promenade 10 years ago, while other council services have also vacated the buildings.

The report adds it has been "a long-standing aspiration of the council’s office accommodation strategy to vacate and demolish the South King Street offices".

Some departments, including Childrens Services, have moved to the council's main offices at Bickerstaffe House, while the Housing Options Team has moved to The Foyer on Chapel Street.

There has recently been a loss of parking spaces due to regeneration schemes.

A seven storey car park with 1,306 spaces, due to open next summer, is being built on Central Car Park as part of the Blackpool Central leisure development, but has meant the loss of 250 spaces during construction.

Capacity has also been lost with the closure of Tower Street Car Park for construction of the extension to the Houndshill Shopping Centre.

Topping Street Car Park is also partially closed due to the siting of temporary premises for the KIng Street Dental Surgery until the former Hop Inn pub is transformed into a new surgery, linked to the £100m DWP office development.

The council report says: "Interim parking located on the South King Street site will help to alleviate pressure on existing town centre parking and secure additional revenue, which could otherwise be lost and will support the new conference centre and town centre economy."