Chester Civic Trust Condemns Station Car Park Plans
Chester Civic Trust supports extra car parking at the Railway Station. However, we do not think all possible site options were seriously considered and we regret that the proposed site seems to have been chosen as the easiest and cheapest option even though it was the most obtrusive.
Our most serious opposition is, however, to the resulting structure on the chosen site. The proposed building will be a monstrosity. It will be three times the height of the adjacent building and two and a half times the maximum height of the central range of station buildings. It will loom over the whole area.
We see from para 8.0 of the applicants’ August 2011 Planning Statement that “initial proposals focused on keeping the building as low as possible and utilising the widest possible footprint.” Neither Chester Civic Trust nor other key stakeholders were consulted at that stage. If we had been, we would have supported this policy. The steps to Hoole Road bridge could have been relocated. A building could have been designed to cover the whole redefined site, with its height graded downwards from west to east. It would then have related more effectively to the adjacent buildings.
We are most concerned about the applicants’ statement that the designs were “amended in accordance with advice received from the Council to create a taller, thinner, structure with a vertical emphasis.” The proposed building is not “tall and thin”. It is a big square block. We consider the Council’s intervention, if confirmed, was deeply flawed.
Yet again, Chester is threatened with a crude and inappropriate building whose brutal impact will shock visitors to the city and will remain with Chester citizens for a long time. It demonstrably conflicts with the aspiration of the One City Plan, p 20, that ‘New developments must be of a quality standard to sit proudly and comfortably within the city’s sensitive archaeological and architectural environment’. The station is one such environment and it deserves better.
Click Here To View Station car park elevations
Copy of the objection posted on the CWAC on-line planning system, 29th September 2011.
Chester Civic Trust New Works Committee
Chester Civic Trust welcomes the opinions of others but no comments by the General Public posted on this website should be read as being endorsed by, or are supported by, the Chester Civic Trust unless specifically stated.