Plymouth City Council has bought the empty Toys ‘R’ Us store in Western Approach as part of its regeneration plans for the West End and the wider Millbay regeneration.
The Council has acquired the building’s long term lease following the company’s collapse earlier this year. It is now working up longer term options for the site, but in the short term, will be making 160 parking spaces available.
Councillor Mark Lowry, Cabinet member for Finance said: “It was sad to see the end of Toys R Us, but snapping up this property will help with our regeneration plans and help businesses in the West End at the same time.
“We’ve got cracking plans for the Millbay boulevard just to the south of this location and Colin Campbell Court over the road – this property is in a key location for us.”
Part of the shop is rented by British Heart Foundation which will be unaffected by the sale.
He added: “We know that businesses worry about losing customers when big regeneration schemes happen. That’s why we are making more car parking close to the West End available.”
This site was identified in the City Centre Masterplan as suitable for a landmark building at a strategic gateway for the city.
The Council has also acquired the Two Trees after the pub came on the market earlier this year. The Council has been steadily been acquiring properties in and around Bath Street, Martin Street and Colin Campbell Court to enable regeneration to progress.
Mark added: “We think it’s a great opportunity to acquire a site at a key location. This will help us make Millbay happen.”