It was first announced in 2014 but seven years on and with a whole new plan in place, demolition work on Stockport’s old bus station is to finally begin next week to make way for a new multi-million pound interchange.
The transport interchange will feature a rooftop park and 196 new apartments in a ‘landmark’ development project by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), Stockport Council, and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA).
20 bus stands, alongside seated waiting areas and cycle storage will also be provided as part of the ‘fully accessible’ and covered passenger concourse.
The new transport interchange, which is set to open in 2024, will also provide new cycling and walking routes to the train station and town centre.
Demolition work on the 40-year-old station will begin on Monday (October 18) and the ongoing construction is expected to cause ‘some disruption’ to passengers.
A temporary bus station was opened in August at the car park on Heaton Lane to provide an alternative facility for passengers alongside Mersey Square. Other services such as coaches are running from temporary stops in the town centre.
Stephen Rhodes, Customer Director at TfGM, said: “The demolition of the old bus station, which forms part of a wider package of site preparation works, really marks a big step forward in this project and will help to make way for a new, innovative interchange.
“We appreciate that our site preparation works may cause some disruption, and we will aim to keep this to a minimum.
“The new interchange, which is due to open to passengers in 2024, will act as a welcoming gateway into Stockport town centre and provide much improved facilities for bus users.
“It will also see the delivery of easier and improved routes into the town centre and to the railway station, as well as improved accessibility between the interchange and the A6.”
The development will feature a new residential building comprising 196 high quality apartments, which will be delivered with support from Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and a grant from Homes England.
Cllr David Meller, Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration at Stockport Council, said: “I’m so pleased that work is progressing to bring forward not only a state of the art transport hub but also good quality new homes and a rooftop park in the heart of the town centre for people to spend time in and enjoy.
“We want to encourage people to find alternative transport methods to using a car and this new hub will allow residents to take the bus, train and eventually Metrolink when it arrives in Stockport.
“Our ambitious plans for the town centre are being delivered at pace and this is a key piece of the jigsaw.”
Greater Manchester-based Willmott Dixon in the North will be undertaking the initial work, and the company expects it to be a project that has a ‘long-lasting legacy’ in Stockport.
Anthony Dillon, Managing Director for Willmott Dixon in the North, explained: “We’re pleased to be getting underway with the site preparation works for this transformational project and to be playing our part in shaping the future of Stockport town centre.
“We’re looking forward to working with TfGM and their project partners as we take these important early steps in delivering a long-lasting legacy for Stockport and the wider Greater Manchester community.”
To find out more about how bus services will be maintained during construction, click here.