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Car parks require multi-disciplinary approach

Helping councils improve the management of town centre car parking and balancing that with the local highways network and the issue of air quality often requires careful handling.

This was the case recently when Canterbury City Council sought to bring forward plans to develop a multi-storey car park at Canterbury West railway station, in part to meet the growing demand for rail travel on High Speed 1.

The brief was to provide an additional 295 parking spaces, taking the total up to 377, with access from Station Road West, while minimising the visual impact on the cityscape and nearby listed buildings.

The Council recognised the economic impact of the city’s rail connectivity to London and the rest of Kent, as well as needing to try and improve local car parking management, and called upon Willmott Dixon to bring together a multi-disciplinary team.

Having succesfully undertaken the planning application and transport assessments for two other multi-storey car parks, Willmott Dixon turned to DHA for expert planning and transport advice. Bond Bryan Architects were appointed to design the new car park and Socotec undertook the air quality assessment. Given the context of the site the project also involved Canterbury Archaeological Trust which undertook a Heritage Assessment.

DHA’s transport team worked closely with KCC Highways, undertaking a Transport Assessment and incorporating improvements to the local highway network. The work also involved looking at minimising disruption during the construction programme, which helped to present a strong planning case and secure planning permission.

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