Plymouth City Council planners are set to consider plans for the £40 million Drake Circus Leisure development in Plymouth city centre.
British Land has submitted a detailed application for the 100,000 sq ft leisure scheme that includes a 12 screen cinema, 13 restaurant units and 420 car park spaces
The scheme, which is due to be considered by the Planning Committee in April, includes improvements to public areas and a new pedestrian route from the city centre to Sutton Harbour and the Barbican, through Bretonside.
British Land signed an agreement with the Council to develop the scheme last year when the Council announced plans to replace the bus station at Bretonside with a new high quality coach hub in the city centre’s west end.
Council Leader Tudor Evans said: “While we cannot prejudge any decision by the Planning Committee, this is a huge deal for Plymouth and we are delighted that this application has now been submitted.
“This is one of the biggest developments the city centre has seen for some time and could completely transform this part of Plymouth.
“Not only will it create a major new leisure destination that will bring more visitors and more local people into the city centre, it replaces the dated Bretonside which, for years, has been past its sell by date and has been a disappointing entrance to the city.”
Councillor Mark Lowry Cabinet member for Finance added: “This is incredibly exciting. Only a few weeks ago, the planning application for a new coach station – to replace tired Bretonside – was submitted for a more fitting gateway to Britain’s Ocean City in the West End.
“It will provide better facilities for passengers and will bring thousands more people to the West End, which is good for business.
“Our city centre supports over 14,000 jobs and we need to keep evolving to keep people coming in. These are exciting times for Plymouth and its retailers and I hope they are encouraged by the new levels of interest from significant investors who believe in Plymouth.
“We are working really hard as a city to attract inward investment and to make so much progress on these two big schemes in a relatively short space of time is fantastic.
“Between them, these two major projects can revive both the east and west ends of Plymouth – which is great for all the businesses in the heart of Plymouth.”
Paul Woods, Chair of Plymouth Growth Board, said: “The very fact a major institution like British Land is submitting a planning application for a further investment of £40 million in a proposed prime Plymouth city centre development is great. It is a huge vote of confidence in our City’s ambitious growth plans and comes on the back of recent good news about other significant sums of money pouring into Plymouth in various capital projects.
“The message it sends out loudly and clearly to the whole of the investment community in the UK and abroad is that Plymouth is a place of great opportunity that has a sound plan to deliver the vision we have set for it as a prosperous vibrant waterfront city that is a wonderful place to live, work and do business in.”
Peter Hartland, Chief Executive of Plymouth Chamber of Commerce said: “Plymouth Chamber welcomes the proposed £40m investment by British Land, in the heart of Plymouth city centre. The development of Drake Circus Leisure, complementing the already highly successful Drake Circus shopping centre, will be a major boost for an already vibrant and growing city and offer valuable job opportunities for local people.
“This proposed scheme would transform the link from the city centre to the Barbican and the waterfront, into a more seamless quality experience for shoppers and visitors alike. Plymouth Chamber is therefore very pleased to be supportive of British Land’s planning application for this exciting development.”
Notes to editors
The Council has already submitted a planning application for the new coach station in Mayflower Street.
The £4.17m coach station and surface-level car park will be created on the former Mayflower West car park site.
The new coach station will have seven coach stands that will serve National Express and Megabus.
An indoor ticket office and waiting room will be provided in the former Lloyds Bank building, with toilets, seating, ‘real time’ information screens, ticket office and a food, drink and newsagent concession.