Attractions industry news

27 Jun 2019

Roman answer to Jorvik Viking Centre planned for York, as developers outline £150m plan

A world-class new museum project documenting York's Roman history will be part of a proposed £150m (US$190.5m, €167.5m) city centre redevelopment called the Roman Quarter.

York Archeological Trust is partnering with York-based property developers North Star, DC Architecture and hotel operator Native to deliver the project in Rougier Street, York City Centre. Three buildings will be demolished to make way for the development, enabling a 33,000sq ft (10,058sq m) museum, 145-bedroom hotel, more than 200 apartments and 15,500sq ft (4,724sq m) of new cafés, retail outlets and restaurants.

The Trust, which developed York's hugely popular Jorvik Viking Centre following a dig at Coppergate in the city in the 1970-1980s, said it will conduct another dig at Rougier Street for two years before building work starts. It's hoped that waterlogged ground conditions at the site will have preserved a large number of significant 2,000-year-old artefacts that will be displayed in the basement museum.

"This is a unique opportunity to understand York's origins and find out more about how the city developed," said David Jennings, CEO of the Trust. "The location, next to the original Roman crossing of the River Ouse, and the scale of the dig, makes us anticipate very exciting discoveries that link Roman Eboracum with York's future."

The archeological dig will be open for the public to view, and the museum is predicted to receive more than half a million visitors per year, adding £20m (US$25.4m, €22.3m) to York's economy.

Plans for the development are being opened for consultation, with a public exhibition event on 4 July. A planning application is to be submitted in the coming months.

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