Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Preston Council vote to demolish the Bus Station

A 2002 view of Preston Bus Station, with Leyland Lynx 218 on route 11 to Ribbleton
On the evening of Monday 17th December, Preston Council's Cabinet met to decide the future of the iconic bus station. Preston City Council's Corporate Management Team recommended that the Cabinet agree "to demolish the Bus Station and Car Park and devise proposals to bring forward the site for development". The Bus Station and Car Park was built in 1969 and is 560 feet long and nine storeys high, the Bus Station has 80 bays and the Car Park has 1100 car parking spaces.

There has been a threat to demolish the Bus Station for several years, associated with the dead in the water Tithebarn Project. Despite the Tithebarn Project collapsing, the council seem determined to destroy one of Preston's most iconic buildings, the latest excuse being a lack of cash to maintain the structure. The figures seem to have been massaged in order to imply that it will be cheaper to demolish the whole building and construct a brand new smaller version, rather than maintaining and utilising the excellent facility that they already have in place.

A Preston Council press statement on the demolition decision is available here:- http://www.preston.gov.uk/news/2012/dec/preston-bus-station-demolition-approved-principle/.

A view from the north end of Preston Bus Station showing the 40 stands used for Preston Bus local services
A 2007 view showing Leyland Olympian 134 on route 12 to the Bus Station
Leyland Lynx 226 arriving on route 16, this access road has been barricaded off in recent years in the name of safety
The 40 stands on the east side were generally used by independent operators like Ribble, Stagecoach and Fishwick
An aerial view of the western side of the Bus Station showing the Car Park and the bays used by Preston Bus
A closer view of the Preston Bus bays, several of which have been extended with islands and barriers added on
An inside view of the eastern side of the Bus Station, showing that there were originally 80 bus bays in total
The busy newsagents and Preston Bus enquiry office are seen in this 2002 view of the Bus Station
The two lane entrance and exit ramp at the south end of the multi-storey car park above the Bus Station

A view inside the 1100 space car park above the Bus Station, showing one of the ramps down to the next level

A 2007 view taken from Lord St, showing The Tithebarn pub on the left and Optare Solo 96 on route 3 to Penwortham

A 2012 view, showing the southern link road barricaded off to create a one-way system and a new zebra crossing
A 2012 view from a rather deserted car park level on the western side of the Bus Station
The deserted and now disused taxi rank at the south end of the Bus Station

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