BULLDOZERS are set to move in on a former food store to make way for a new council car park.

This week, Durham County Council’s planning authority approved proposals for the vacant Kwiksave building at Parkwood Precinct, Festival Walk, Spennymoor.

The application forms part of wider plans to regenerate the town in a partnership between Durham County Council and Hellens Group.

It also follows a bid by supermarket giant Aldi to build a new store on the site of the former Kingfisher pub, which was recently approved by councillors.

The application for the Kwiksave building came from Durham County Council with the replacement car park offering 47 spaces. This includes two accessible spaces, two electric vehicle charging bays and cycle and motorcycle options.

During consultation, concerns were raised about the impact of the demolition work and how the parking changes could affect the town. A key ask included unrestricted parking over fears drivers could be displaced into neighbouring streets. Other concerns included potential damage to properties, noise, dust and the need to look at alternative routes into the car park.

Despite this, the council’s planning authority deemed the scheme acceptable and approved the plans on Tuesday, January 14.

A decision report added a two hour parking limit was appropriate as it would “promote linked trips within the town centre”.

The report reads: “It would also prevent long stay parkers such as workers and residents from taking up space for lengthy periods of time and restricting the use of the car park by shoppers and visitors to the town centre.

“In terms of damage to residential properties, this is considered to be a civil matter whilst all issues relating to potential noise, dust and disturbance will be controlled through the demolition management plan.

“Overall none of the objections or concerns raised as a result of the public consultation processes on the application are considered to warrant the withholding of planning permission.”

Under planning conditions, work must take place within three years. Demolition activities will also be limited to 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday and 8am to 1pm on Saturday.