A refined set of plans which would see significant changes in the area around York Minster have been published.
A copy of the prospectus can be downloaded from this link
The proposals are both ambitious and respectful tot eh heritage of both the Cathedral itself and the surrounding City.
They include a new “Queen Elisabeth Square” adjacent to the west end of the Minster. This is a welcome move towards the pedestrianisation of Duncombe Place. A vehicular access route – which will apparently still accommodate the Railway museums “Disney” train – has been retained.
The role of Deans Park as a quiet part of the City centre has been respected.
Likely to be more controversial – with the devil being in the detail – are plans for new buildings in the area where Constantine currently sits. The Roman will be rehoused further down Deangate, where he will be joined by a statute of Queen Elisabeth II
A separate Deangate cycle track is planned ending the present shared space arrangement with pedestrians. Access only restrictions will be enforced ending the visits of parents to the entrance to the Minster School. They will have a separate drop off point at the end of Duncombe Place. The school itself will get enhanced facilities.
St Williams College will be brought back into use – not before time – and will accommodate Minster office staff. It is an old building, with an arcane layout, so good look to them with that.
The existing Church House administration offices will be converted into flats which will be rented out.
There are plans to develop the Deanery garages as residential accommodation for workers.
That may not suit everyone and there are some potentially awkward interfaces with the surrounding community. The new square, for example, doesn’t seem to make the best of the possible linkages to Stonegate.
But overall the proposals represent good progress and are being progressed in an inclusive way which reflects well on their authors.
Responses to the consultation can be made via this link The consultation closes on 16th June 2019.