Video & pix: The new vision for York’s castle area – complete with river park, fountain and boardwalk
This video and set of pictures show an historic area of York transformed – from a grotty car park into a tranquil park and public space.
The new vision for the Castle Gateway scheme shows a new vision for the area from Clifford’s Tower to the River Foss to the Eye of York.
City of York Council has submitted plans to turn the area into a ‘world class space’.
The newly unveiled design follows the open community brief produced in 2019, which set out ideas submitted by residents on the future use of the space. It has been created by landscape architects at BDP.
The key points
The plans include:
- A new open space to gather, play and enjoy fountains and also host large scale events throughout the year
- A riverside park next to the Foss, and create a new boardwalk behind the Castle Museum linking into Castle Gardens and the new bridge to Castle Mills
- A path around the base of Clifford’s Tower will allow people to walk around the motte, and also serve as an act of remembrance to commemorate the 1190 Jewish massacre
- Increased biodiversity, seating and a performance space for live music and drama around the Eye of York, which retains its oak tree and lawn whilst increasing biodiversity, providing seating and a performance space for music, theatre and public speaking.
A route through the former car park area will reinstate the historic Castlegate approach that linked the city with the castle area.
Meanwhile, Tower Street will become “a shared space for pedestrians and cars” with Blue Badge parking provided
“New landscaping will create a feeling that you have arrived into a new place and will also create different qualities of space, from reflective and peaceful to lively and playful,” the council says.
‘Bold and ambitious plans’
Council leader Keith Aspden said: “Castle Gateway is a part of our plans to make York an even better place to live and visit, creating a world-class public space for everyone to enjoy and attracting high quality events on our residents’ doorsteps.”
Cllr Nigel Ayre, executive member for finance and performance, said: “I’m delighted that we have reached this next stage of the Castle and Eye of York project with some truly bold and ambitious plans to transform this culturally and historically significant area.
“The feedback from businesses and residents is at the heart of these plans, so I hope as many people will continue to engage as the project progresses to ensure it delivers a world-class space that is right for our communities.”
How to find out more
- Read the planning application here
- Comment by email to [email protected] or by post to Development Management, City of York Council, West Offices, York YO1 6GA
- Take part in a Facebook Live online presentation and Q&A on the council’s Facebook page on Wednesday 16 February from 6pm to 7pm
- Join the hosted My Castle Gateway walks will be taking place on Saturday 19 February 2022, on-site between at noon an 1.30pm. The walks will present the designs, explore how they respond to the Open Brief, and discuss how you will use the new spaces. Please book your place in advance here.