THE busy Forge car park at Stockton Heath, which has been blighted with potholes, is set to receive a much needed £750,000 investment thanks to a new council project.
Plans have been developed for the £750,000 refurbishment of The Forge car park asnd Warrington Borough Council’s Cabinet will be asked, at its meeting in September, to approve the capital spend on the project.
Approval would see the council beginning the tender process to appoint a contractor to upgrade the car park, modernising and future-proofing it for the next 20 years.
The council’s parking services team has been working closely with Stockton Heath Parish Council, as well as the local medical centre and the Forge shopping centre to develop the improvement plans for the car park, which has been in need of refurbishment for a number of years.
A range of options are being considered, including:
•Resurfacing of the car park, with new lining and signage
•Demolition of the dilapidated toilet block on the lower level
•Creation of 24 additional parking spaces, including six disabled parking bays
•New drainage, CCTV, lighting and pay and display machines
Warrington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for highways, transportation and public realm, Cllr Hans Mundry, said: “We recognise that The Forge car park – which is exceptionally well-used by local people – has been in need of major refurbishment for many years. While we regularly carry out essential repairs at the site, this does not provide a long term solution.
“I’m pleased that, working with the community, we have identified a way forward. These plans would enable us to upgrade and modernise the car park, ensuring it remains a safe, sustainable and accessible site which is well-equipped to serve the busy Stockton Heath district centre.”
The council also recognises that there are a number of potholes existing on some of the main access routes to the car park, particularly from West Avenue, and will be addressing these in the short term, with remedial works programmed for 28 June.
The Council’s Cabinet will consider the capital spend on the project at their meeting on 14 September.
Local residents, supported by Cllr Kath Buckley, had been campaigning for improvements to the car park for many months and were outraged when parking charges were reintroduced last month.
She said at the time:“It adds insult to injury that shoppers should to be expected to pay for parking and have to dodge the potholes in their car or on foot. It’s now almost inaccessible to wheelchair users and parents with buggies.”