Signage rethink after car park ‘looks closed’

Talbot Road multi-storey car park and (below) council leader Simon Blackburn.
Talbot Road multi-storey car park and (below) council leader Simon Blackburn.
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Clearer signs are to be installed to direct people to a recently refurbished car park after complaints drivers cannot find their way in.

Blackpool’s Talbot Road multi-storey car park reopened at the beginning of November following a £6m refurbishment.

Blackpool council leader Simon Blackburn

Blackpool council leader Simon Blackburn

Changes include a shutter on the front entrance which slides up as cars approach.

But it has been claimed some motorists have believed the car park was closed when the shutter is down.

Coun Don Clapham, deputy leader of the Conservative group on Blackpool Council, said: “There is no actual entrance to that car park - there is no ‘in’ and no ‘out’.

“The two shutter doors are closed and it looks like it is closed to the world.

“The only people I saw turning off were going into the service bay.

“Also there is no indication on this multi-million pound car park whether there are any spaces available behind those shutters or not.”

Now council chiefs are introducing a number of measure to improve accessibility.

These include a painted arrow on the surface of the carriageway to direct people to the entrance.

An entrance sign and a sign to advise drivers the shutter will open once they approach it have been ordered.

An illuminated sign to inform drivers if there are spaces available was faulty and is being replaced.

Blackpool Council leader Coun Simon Blackburn, said: “The shutter is there for security reasons but there are clearly signage issues which need to be resolved.”

The car park was closed for a year while the refurbishment was carried out as part of the first phase of the £220m new Central Business District.

The structure, which dates back to 1939, had fallen into a state of disrepair.

Originally it had been proposed to demolish the car park, but council chiefs opted to upgrade it instead.

It has been re-clad to create a glass and stainless steel facade boasting 650 parking spaces, with the interior entirely upgraded.

The ground floor, which was formerly used as the town’s bus station, has also been overhauled to create retail units, with the largest unit set to open as Mr Basrai’s World Buffet and Bar.

Work is ongoing to attract other tenants.

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