Architects have been formally appointed for the first stage in Preston Markets plan.Advertisement
Preston City Council’s cabinet approved the £161,375 signing up of IBI Taylor Young Limited on Wednesday night and charged them with creating designs for how the Victorian Covered market and current Indoor Market area could look.
The Indoor Market, Market Hall car park and Lancastria house are all earmarked for demolition under the city council scheme.
A cinema complex and restaurants are proposed for the current Indoor Market and the Victorian covered market would be refitted with a number of semi-permanent stalls.
Councillor Peter Rankin, leader of the city council, said: “The market is an essential part of Preston and as a Council we are totally committed to investing in a new market. That’s why we have appointed IBI Taylor Young Ltd. to work with us to come forward with the best possible scheme for Preston that the budget will allow.
“We have the fabulous Victorian market canopy in Preston that, with some investment and imagination, could become a permanent home for a vibrant new centre point for the Markets Quarter in Preston City Centre.
“I am confident that with their experience and track record in delivering successful market schemes, IBI Taylor Young Ltd. can help Preston to achieve similar success for Preston’s Markets Quarter too.”
A consultation with market traders is due to take once plans are drawn up.
David Gardner at IBI Taylor Young Ltd said: “We are delighted to be working with Preston and are looking forward to meeting market traders to develop a new markets quarter in Preston.
“We’ve got a lot of experience with markets redevelopment – most notably in Ashton and Chesterfield, both of which have won national awards, so we understand how important markets are to towns and cities and the sense of local identity they can offer.
“Preston and its markets have a huge potential and we are very fortunate to work on such an exciting project, especially in the face of strong competition.”
The plans have drawn criticism from many Indoor Market traders and local property developer Jeremy Rowlands has chimed in with an opinion piece for Blog Preston.
Rowlands writes: “The desire of the council to provide a site for a city centre cinema is admirable, however with any complex unlikely to be completed before 2018 has the bird not already flown here? Will film streaming not kill the idea like internet shopping killed the rest of Tithebarn? There is a huge danger here that the enormous upheaval involved could also practically kill off the market, leaving just a few tatty stalls, with a flat carpark or dismal cheap retail sheds where the indoor market stood.”
What do you think on the markets plan? Do you agree with Rankin or Rowlands? Let us know in the comments below