COVENTRY is set to be transformed into one of the region’s top retail and leisure destination as part of a new £360 million development.
Developer Shearer Property group has been announced as the firm which will deliver the new City Centre South project.
The council claim the project is the next step in the new look city centre – transforming some of the most out-dated areas of the city centre, including Bull Yard, Shelton Square, City Arcade and Hertford Street.
The proposals include a major department store, three new flagship stores, up to 50 new shops and a cinema.
They will connect the city’s much loved, circular market with the rest of the centre and is hoped to be open for business by 2022.
Coun Jim O’Boyle, cabinet member for jobs and regeneration, said: “City Centre South is a key part of our plans to create a new, vibrant Coventry and we wanted to be absolutely sure we had the right scheme in place.
“We need to attract major names and bring people back into the city centre for shopping and leisure – in the day time and at night – and this mixed development will transform what is now a tired and dated part of the centre.”
New shops will be joined by a new cinema, bowling and restaurants as well as an hotel in the leisure part of the development based in Hertford Street and linking to Broadgate Square.
Guy Shearer from Shearer Property Group said the ‘huge’ site – about the size of ten football pitches – provided the city with chance to be put on the map as a retail and leisure destination.
The firm has been working closely with the council over the last three years to deliver the new restaurant quarter at Cathedral Lanes.
He added: “Our scheme embraces the concept of creating not just a major step change for Coventry but repositioning the city as a true metropolitan destination within the Midlands conurbation that will bring new retailers to the city and attract shoppers from a much wider catchment.
“Coventry will offer a shopping and leisure experience which can compete with and surpass its neighbours and competitors – a new sense of place that the city can be truly proud of.”
The scheme is set to create around 1,500 permanent jobs, with over 2,000 more during the building work, and once open it is expected to generate an extra £20m a year of income to the city.
The council claims it will make the city the second biggest shopping destination in the West Midlands.
Council leader George Duggins said: “When you look at all the changes happening around Coventry and see the ambitious plans for City Centre South, it shows there are great times ahead for our city.”
The cost of the scheme will, for the most part, be met by the developer.
Funding of up to £98.8m to help the project has already been approved by the West Midlands Combined Authority.
The public will be asked for their views as part of the planning application process.
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