Town centre car park to close as work set to start on new £8m facility

Amended plans for proposed Piries Place Car Park showing 'living wall' (photo from HDC's planning portal).
Amended plans for proposed Piries Place Car Park showing 'living wall' (photo from HDC's planning portal).

A town centre car park is set to close later this month as works begin on a new multi-million pound parking facility.

Piries Place is currently undergoing a major facelift with shops being demolished and pavements ripped up as developers continue work on a £35m scheme.

The latest artist's impression of Piries Place. SUS-171122-165924001

The latest artist's impression of Piries Place. SUS-171122-165924001

Alongside the development - which is set to transform the shopping quarter - separate plans were approved to knock down the 330 space car park and replace it with a new £8m building.

The car park is owned by Horsham District Council which will be funding and overseeing the works, set to be completed by mid 2019.

The building is expected to close on Monday June 18 with additional parking spaces being provided around the town centre whilst the redevelopment is carried out.

Despite the works the council says it will be ‘business as usual’ in the area.

Demolition starts on the old Waitrose building, Piries Place Horsham. Pic Steve Robards SR1728633 SUS-171127-155414001

Demolition starts on the old Waitrose building, Piries Place Horsham. Pic Steve Robards SR1728633 SUS-171127-155414001

The the landmark town square has suffered since Waitrose moved to its new home in Albion Way in 2015.

Developers Reef Estates is aiming to build a ‘high quality leisure led’ shopping area, expected to be completed by early next year.

The multi-million pound redevelopment is set to create a new 92-bed hotel, along with a three-screen cinema and several shops and restaurants.

Works started towards the end of last year with several buildings, including the unit formerly home to Waitrose - torn down and a maze of hoardings put up.

Hoardings up at Piries Place Horsham. Pic Steve Robards SR1728591 SUS-171127-155228001

Hoardings up at Piries Place Horsham. Pic Steve Robards SR1728591 SUS-171127-155228001

So far only three new traders have been confirmed. Independent boutique style cinema chain Everyman will be taking over the cinema while national giant Premier Inn will run the hotel. Raymond Blanc’s gastro pub chain The White Brasserie Co is also set to open its first Sussex pub, complete with a French brasserie twist, in the unit which fronts the Carfax.

Several existing traders including Broadbridges and the Ceramic Shack have also been retained.

The new car park will offer 516 spaces which are set to be wider than the spaces in the existing car park.

The council has announced an addition 33 spaces will available in the Pavilions in the Park car park whilst the development is carried out following a major reconfiguration at the leisure centre site which is due to be completed by the time the Piries building closes.

Piries Place before development, Horsham 29-08-17. Pic Steve Robards SR1720646

Piries Place before development, Horsham 29-08-17. Pic Steve Robards SR1720646

The council has also confirmed additional parking will be made available at its offices at Parkside, Chart Way, and in the Dukes Square Car Park behind the Drill Hall in Denne Road.

The car park toilets will also be closed during the works with the closest facilities now at the Capitol, the Forum, the bus station, the Pavilions In The Park or Swan Walk Shopping Centre.

Cabinet member for the Local Economy, Gordon Lindsay said: “We look forward to the construction phase making rapid progress throughout the coming months.

“During the reconstruction it is also good to see local businesses continuing as normal during the building works.

“The longer term benefits of this redevelopment will outweigh the short term disruption and we are grateful to residents, visitors and businesses for bearing with us as the construction work progresses towards successful completion.”

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