AN "AIRSPEED attraction" celebrating York's links to aviation history could still be on the cards for the city centre, museum bosses say.
The Reynard's garage building on Piccadilly, once the home of a pioneering 1930s aircraft factory, has disappeared completed after the city council opted to pull down the derelict building.
Now the director of the Yorkshire Air Museum (YAM) in Elvington says a long-held ambition to create a 1930s-themed attraction on the site is still very much alive.
Ian Reed has confirmed that the museum is still in talks over the future of the site.
The controversial decision to demolish the 1920s Art Deco building was made late last year, despite an outcry from heritage campaigners and the existing proposals that would have seen the YAM take on the building and create a new tourist attraction on the site.
Surveyors had warned the council that the crumbling condition of the building - originally a trolleybus depot - posed a danger to the public.
The building in the 1960s, and shortly before its recent demolition
Now Mr Reed has said he has spoken to a developer about including their attraction in a residential and retail redevelopment of the site, but as the land is council-owned has to wait until City of York Council (CYC) made a decision on its future.
He added: "Nobody is taking anything for granted, but there is an awful lot of public interest in this site. We get phone calls and emails about it all the time."
"We are confident that City of York Council will do the right thing."
In October councillors agreed to push for major redevelopments in the "Southern Gateway" taking in Piccadilly and the Castle area. The council is currently recruiting a project manager, and a spokesman said that once that appointment is made they will be able to start procurement for developments on the land.
In late 2013 York-based company Northminster put in a bid to redevelop Reynard's with a scheme that included the Airspeed attraction, but failed to get support from the council. Last year it emerged that CYC had gone on to reject all the deals it was offered at the time, largely for hotels, saying none were "satisfactory on commercial terms".
Northminster have long-standing links to the area, and completed the £5 million Piccadilly Lofts apartment scheme in spring 2015. The company is currently working on plans for a £25 million hotel and apartment scheme in places of the current NCP car park and Infinity Motorcycles shop opposite Reynard's.