Plans have been announced to transform unused land in Bishop Auckland into a new 72-space car park.
The car park is designed to offer additional short stay parking to those using the town’s main shopping area, with improved pedestrian access to Newgate Street.
Work is due to begin on the Kingsway site in spring 2019, with the finished facility expected to be opened to the public by the autumn.
The Auckland Project and Durham County Council are working together to create the new car park.
The Kingsway site has been acquired by The Auckland Project and the work to transform the derelict land into a new asset for the town will be carried out by Durham County Council. The local authority will also continue to run and manage the car park after its opening.
The Auckland Project is a visitor destination being created in Bishop Auckland, it has opened the Mining Art Gallery and Auckland Tower in the town’s Market Place.
Over the next three years, new attractions will be launched in the town including, a Faith Museum, Spanish Gallery, Walled Garden and the re-opening of Auckland Castle.
It is estimated that by 2020 the new visitor destination will attract hundreds of thousands of visitors to the town.
And to prepare Bishop Auckland for this increase in visitor numbers, both organisations are working together to improve parking provision.
David Maddan, CEO of The Auckland Project said: “This new car parking facility is part of our ongoing commitment to revitalise the future of Bishop Auckland.
“We hope that offering shoppers a better way to park and access the town will assist economic regeneration. And we are pleased to be working in partnership with Durham County Council on this project, joining together with local organisations and businesses is the best way to make real change.”
This is not the first time The Auckland Project and Durham County Council have joined forces. In 2017, the organisations worked with more than 20 local businesses to help Bishop Auckland become the first town in the north east to achieve WorldHost Recognised Destination status, a new benchmark for excellence in customer service.
Cllr Carl Marshall, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “This project will see the transformation of a piece of unused land into a car park providing dozens of extra spaces for shoppers visiting Bishop Auckland.
“We are pleased to be working with The Auckland Project on the initiative, which should provide a further boost to businesses in the town.”
To stay up to date with The Auckland Project visit: www.aucklandproject.org/ or follow The Auckland Project on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.