Work to create a new 52-space car part in Ashby has officially started with the demolition of the former health centre in North Street.
North West Leicestershire District Council has taken the first steps in creating a 'culture and leisure' quarter in the town as part of a bid to transform the town.
Demolition began on Tuesday, November 7, and the ground is currently being prepared for the new car park, which is expected to be completed by the spring.
The development is being carried out as part of the Ashby neighbourhood plan, created by Ashby Town Council, which aims to boost the town's culture and attract more tourists.
Councillor John Coxon, leader of Ashby Town Council, said: "Local people who had their say in the Ashby neighbourhood plan wanted to make sure our town is vibrant and successful well into the future.
"The former health centre site is the perfect place to provide new car parking spaces, so I'm pleased that the district council agrees and is able to work with us to make these much needed improvements to our town.
"I'm looking forward to seeing the car park open and available for people to use when visiting businesses in the town."
Local businesses seem to be excited for the new car park to open, hoping that it will give customers more flexibility.
A staff member from Hollywell Petals said: "Car parking in Ashby is not good at the moment. Customers are in a rush because a lot of the car parks have limits of just a few hours.
"We're hoping that a new car park will help customers relax a little more and feel that they can browse a little more."
A store assistant from Grace and Co Jewellery said: "I know Ashby does have quite a problem with the car parking so hopefully it might help our customers out."
Leader of North West Leicestershire District Council, Councillor Richard Blunt, said: "The £1.1 million injection from the district council into Ashby is working to support the town's neighbourhood plan and address some of the issues that local people have highlighted.
"This vibrant town has fantastic attractions and facilities; we want to work with the town council to help it thrive."
Councillor Alison Smith, also from the council, said: "The development is a prime location for parking, located very close to leisure and cultural attractions in Ashby de la Zouch like the leisure centre and the theatre, as well as the shops on Market Street.
"As a local business owner and someone who uses Ashby as a place to shop and relax, I know how much this new car park is needed.
"The additional spaces and redesign of this part of town support a wider aspiration to support Ashby, which is a vibrant and enjoyable place to be."
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