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Drake Circus Leisure moves closer to development

British Land is closer to kicking off construction of Plymouth’s £40 million Drake Circus Leisure scheme as the company serves notice on Plymouth City Council to vacate Bretonside Coach Station. Under the Development Agreement with the Council, British Land will commit £2m to the construction of the city’s new coach station on Mayflower Street.  

Earlier this year planning permission was granted by Plymouth City Council for the 100,000 sq ft scheme, located next to Drake Circus Shopping Centre. Last month British Land exchanged contracts with Cineworld to anchor the development. The new cinema will incorporate state-of-the-art audio and visual technology, and will have 12 screens ranging in size from a 63-seat to a giant 450-seat IMAX auditoria. British Land has received strong demand from a number of restaurant operators for the 14 restaurants proposed, many of which currently have no presence in Plymouth.

Construction work is expected to start in summer 2016 and the scheme is due to open mid-2018. This development is part of British Land’s focus on growing the leisure provision across the retail portfolio reflecting changes in the way people shop today.

British Land signed the Development Agreement with the council in September 2014, and received planning permission in April 2015. Drake Circus Leisure will create 350 permanent jobs for local people, in addition to a number of temporary construction jobs, and will be a great benefit to the city’s night time economy.

David Pollock, Retail Development Director for British Land, said: “Once complete, Drake Circus Leisure will be the most significant leisure scheme in the South West and we are delighted to be one step closer to delivering the project.  The recent letting to Cineworld and interest from restaurant operators has allowed us to accelerate our plans, and we are excited to be working with the Council to enhance the city centre.”

Cabinet member for Finance and Assets and City Centre champion Mark Lowry said: “The amount of work that goes into making these developments happen is huge. I’m chuffed to bits that so many companies are lining up to be part of this complex – this will add another string to the city centre’s bow and keep more people coming both during the day and in the evening. There’s a real sense of progress on this scheme which will help transform this part of Plymouth and offer more choice for people looking to spend their time and money on Plymouth’s city centre.”

Other news on shopping centres:

Whiteley Shopping opens £18 million cinema and dining complex

Ealing Broadway Shopping Centre celebrates it’s 30th birthday

New Mersey Shopping Park kick starts leisure development

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