Work on a major upgrade to improve access to Worthing’s car parks is well underway. As part of multi-million pound investment in it’s town centre multi-storeys, Worthing Borough Council’s contractors have begun installing new lifts in the Buckingham Road car park. Local authority leaders took the decision to replace the two 50-year-old elevators after a series of malfunctioning problems in recent months.
The £211,000 work, which will also see the lift entrances widened to allow easy access for those in wheelchairs or with pushchairs, is expected to be complete by summer 2018. It is one of the first steps in a three year car park investment programme which is being paid for by a number of modest increases to tariffs at some of the council car parks expected to come into force on 18 January 2018.
Councillor Diane Guest, Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Environment, who recently visited the site to see how the installation was progressing, said: “I’m delighted to see our investment in the town’s multi-storeys is already having a positive impact. Our car parks are quite often the first impression that visitors have of Worthing so it’s vital that they they are welcoming, modern, safe and accessible for all. These new lifts are just the start of a much-needed investment programme which will have wide reaching benefits for the town centre. I’m looking forward to seeing it progress.”
Work on the new lifts began just before Christmas. It will be phased so that one lift is operating at all times to ensure that those with mobility issues can continue to access the car park. The wider car park refurbishment programme has already seen new ‘smart’ lighting and replacement CCTV installed in Buckingham and High Street multi-storeys. This together with recently introduced night patrols will improve security at all sites.
The new environmentally-friendly lighting cost £168,000 and will save an estimated £49,000 a year – meaning it will be have paid for itself in just over three years. Future works will include refurbishment of parking decks, entrances and public stairwells and new signage. In future it will be easier for customers to pay with online automatic billing and contactless payment options being pursued.