This evening saw the Lib Dem Councillor Runciman bring the motion to save union terrace car park to the Labour cabinet in the City of York.
A little bit of history behind this, in June of this year York Press announced that Union Terrace car park was to exist no more as York St. John wanted to buy the site to develop it to their own needs.
Union Terrace car park is one of two city centre locations that has the facilities to allow coaches to park in York. The other being St George’s Fields car park along the riverside. York floods… a lot; St George’s Fields car park is the car park that floods the most in York and so is not the best location in York to host all coach parking facilities in York.
Union Terrace is a vital car park that provides the infrastructure to feed many tourists along Gillygate and into the multitude of independent shops that thrive on tourism. If the Union Terrace car park was to close then Gillygate would lose a huge amount of footfall and ultimately end up with businesses closing. This is not an option for York the City of Tourism.
The Labour council decided that it would listen to ‘voters’ and so brought out of nowhere 5 additional plans for Union Terrace, none of which included not selling the profit making car park. The other options are all to include selling part of the car park off. Which with such a multitude of small businesses that run on low profit margins in the area could be the end of some if not many of those. There are so many issues that are wrong with this quick sale.
- The sale price of £3.6million is not a price that takes into consideration the planning permission
- There has been no voice stating alternatives, even though the former Rowntrees site is looking for people who want to develop there
- There has been no consideration to other offers, purely York St. John University
- There has been no impact survey into the jobs lost and local businesses that ultimately could close
- The car park that feeds residents and a GP surgery would not have space if University of York was viewed as an example and students would taske up the limited number of car parking spaces if it was to be a partial sale
- The petition of over 22,000 signatures of protesters to the sale have been ignored