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Work to demolish Chesterfield's Co-op link bridge begins

The bridge has been a familiar sight in Chesterfield for many years.
The bridge has been a familiar sight in Chesterfield for many years.

Work to knock down Chesterfield's distinctive Co-op link bridge is underway.

The demolition is taking place between the hours of 11.45pm and 5.45am until Sunday, March 4.

The bridge connected the two Co-op stores.

The bridge connected the two Co-op stores.

A road closure is in force on Elder Way during those hours to allow the work to be carried out.

The bridge connected the former Co-op building with the Central England Co-operative supermarket.

The former Co-op building is currently undergoing a £10.5million transformation.

When finished, the building - which has stood empty for nearly five years - will boast:

The former Saltergate multi-storey car park is being demolished.

The former Saltergate multi-storey car park is being demolished.

► A 92-bedroom Premier Inn hotel on the first and second floors;

► Seven ground-floor restaurants and bars;

► A gym in the basement.

READ MORE: VIDEO & PICTURES: Inside Chesterfield's old Co-op building

Meanwhile, across the road, work to demolish the former Saltergate multi-storey car park has started.

During the spring, Chesterfield Borough Council will submit a planning application to itself seeking permission to build a multi-million pound replacement car park which offers:

► Safe, secure, 24-hour parking;

► Better parking facilities for motorists;

► 531 parking spaces - more than what is currently offered;

► A more contemporary building.

Councillor Terry Gilby, the council's cabinet member for growth, said: "The new car park is part of the wider Northern Gateway project.

"It will deliver a better quality multi-storey car park for shoppers, commuters and users of the hotel, restaurants, bar and gym that are currently being developed as part of the scheme to refurbish the former Co-op building."

He said the former Saltergate multi-storey care park was 'showing its age' and didn't provide 'the modern facilities that modern motorists need'.

He added: "We did look at renovating the existing one but the level of structural engineering work required meant that it made financial sense to build a replacement one instead."

A borough council spokesman said that the authority is in the final stages of procurement for a contractor to build the new Saltergate multi-storey car park.

"The date for the opening of the new multi-storey car park will be confirmed once the building designs have been prepared and planning permission has been granted," the spokesman added.