Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting CHNEWS to 80360, or email
Work finally starts on Skipton High Street project
11:00am Friday 25th January 2013 in News
Work is finally under way on a multi-million pound cafe and shops regeneration scheme in Skipton High Street.
Seven months after a government planning inspector approved the scheme, and two and a half years after the original application for 9 High Street and land behind the town hall was submitted, work has started.
Developers Maple Grove said this week they were delighted to be on site at last and predicted the project would be completed in ten months, with the majority of businesses open by Easter next year.
Maple Grove is expected to announce shortly the final line-up for the two food outlets on the site of 9 High Street and the five new shops forming Albion Place behind the town hall, but they are strongly believed to include Pizza Express on the High Street, and Next, Brantano Shoes and Cotswold outdoor shop behind the town hall.
Graham Pilkington, senior development surveyor, said: “We are happy to have started on site with preliminary works for this vital retail-led regeneration project.”
It is believed work will start with the demolition of 9 High Street, the former Skipton Clinic.
Of the 435 car parking spaces in the town hall car park, 104 will be taken up by Albion Place and an additional 20 will be lost temporarily while the construction takes place.
Craven District Council said it would closely monitor any possible difficulties with the car park - together with Coach Street car park where work is also taking place - but it believed there was enough capacity, at least until the busy summer period.
Hazel Smith, the council’s assets and projects manager, said: “Despite the temporary loss of spaces, historical occupancy rates over the last five years show there is sufficient parking to cope with the demand.”
She said even if the car park became full, there were other car parks in the town to cope with demand.
Mr Pilkington said they were trying to keep disruption to a minimum. He added: “We will be keeping neighbouring people and businesses up-to-date with progress via regular newsletters.
“Working closely with Eric Wright Construction, the site has been registered with the Considerate Constructors scheme, an initiative which recognises and rewards best practice on construction sites.”