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East Herts Council brokers land deal with Herts County Council for multi-storey car park in Bishop's Stortford

Negotiations have concluded between East Herts district and Herts county councils for a plot of land critical to plans for a new multi-storey car park in Bishop’s Stortford.

The site at Northgate End is the final piece of the jigsaw needed to deliver 546 spaces over six levels on the former cattle market.

At the latest meeting of the full district council, members approved the deal without disclosing figures in public.

Parking land deal (25522509)
Parking land deal (25522509)

East Herts Council’s Conservative leader Cllr Linda Haysey said: “We look forward to a fantastic 2020.”

The conclusion of the deal came as a High Court judge quashed a second judicial review bid by car park opponent Clive Risby, who lives in Yew Tree Place, a cul de sac which borders the site.

Cllr Haysey said: “We can now start moving ahead – we have been delayed for more than a year.”

Northgate End car park CGI. (25522968)
Northgate End car park CGI. (25522968)

She dismissed concerns from Bishop’s Stortford Liberal Democrat Cllr Mione Goldspink that the purchase of land at the youth centre from the county council would rob the town’s youngsters of facilities.

The deal secures the leasehold of the land for the next 250 years. In addition to the purchase price, East Herts will provide the county council with a maximum of 150 parking permits a year in total for centre staff and visitors.

The multi-storey is the key to ambitious plans for a cultural quarter, known as Old River Lane – including a £30m arts centre incorporating a 500-seat theatre – on the former site of the 1 The Causeway office block, which was demolished in 2017. It will be surrounded by shops, offices, new homes and a public square for events.

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