Cheshire East Council has given an update on its Royal Arcade scheme for Crewe – with further works set to begin before the end of the month and a public vote planned to decide the final design of a ‘heritage feature wall’.
Since January, Cheshire East Council has been working closely with its development partner Peveril Securities Ltd and contractor Bowmer + Kirkland, to ensure work on the town centre scheme’s new bus station and multi-storey car park can continue to push ahead.
While facing significant challenges in the construction sector – most notably being inflation and supply chain costs – the council is pleased that a number of tasks are underway, and that contractors are now due to be on site before the end of April.
It is expected that the new bus station and multi-storey car park will be completed by the end of 2023.
Councillor Nick Mannion, chair of Cheshire East Council’s economy and growth committee, said: “We understand and appreciate that Crewe’s communities want to see visible progress on the Royal Arcade site and the council shares that wish wholeheartedly.
“The challenges currently facing the construction sector are significant and widespread, and the council is not immune to those factors.
“But despite those challenges, council officers have been working tirelessly to ensure that the Royal Arcade scheme continues to move forward, and I am pleased to say that people will continue to see a visible presence on site.
“I am also excited to announce that we will shortly be launching a public vote on the design options for the scheme’s new feature heritage wall, which will draw on both Crewe’s past and its promising future.
“The chosen design will adorn one of the walls above the new bus station.”
Recent progress on the Royal Arcade scheme has included advanced works for the removal of some trees around the site.
In preparation for the demolition of the bus sheds, archaeological excavations will be taking place over the next few weeks to investigate and record some of the historic uses of the bus station site over past centuries.
This is a condition and requirement of the planning consent.
Once further works get underway on site, hoarding will be put up around the former bus workshops on Delamere Street.
Works are also taking place to prepare for the diversion of services such as gas, electricity and drainage, to allow the footprint of the new bus station and multi-storey car park to be clear for construction.
The council’s contractor has also submitted applications to temporarily close some roads and footpaths as needed, as well as ‘stopping-up orders’ for the roads servicing the current bus station – Charles Street and Tower Way – which the Department for Transport will consult upon shortly.
These orders allow for a road to be taken out of use permanently.
Working closely with operators, the council has committed to keeping an operational bus station on the site throughout all phases of demolition and construction of the new bus station and multi-storey car park.