Royal Arcade Crewe 3

A £48 million plan to revitalise the Royal Arcade site in Crewe town centre is being considered by Cheshire East Council, it emerged today.

The plan aims to redevelop the Royal Arcade site to include a new eight-screen cinema, gym, restaurants, shops, a new bus station, and refurbish the Market Hall.

Councillors hope that if supported, it could trigger wider regeneration, investment and growth as the area seeks to become a hub for HS2.

A new report, to go before councillors on September 12, proposes an agreement with Peveril Securities – part of the Bowmer and Kirkland Group – and their development manager Cordwell Property Group, to transform the Royal Arcade site and deliver a mixed-use leisure and retail scheme.

As well as a cinema complex, gym, restaurants and shops, it will also include a new 450-space multi-storey car park.

Cllr Don Stockton, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for regeneration, said: “Following consultation with residents in 2015, we’ve been working with cabinet members, local members and officers to bring together proposals which will transform Crewe town centre.

“It’s essential that Crewe becomes better placed to benefit from all that HS2 can bring, as well as deliver the ambitious economic growth targets outlined in the emerging Constellation Growth Strategy for the sub-region.

“These plans will build on the £25m investment that has already been realised through the lifestyle centre and university technical college and we are confident it will act as a catalyst for much more private sector investment in the future.”

The report seeks approval to invest almost £15 million of Cheshire East Council funding, alongside £10m from Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership, which the council hopes to secure later this month.

A further £23.6m of private sector investment will be drawn in.

Royal Arcade Crewe 1

William Warrack, managing director of Cordwell Property Group, said: “Our discussions with commercial occupiers in the leisure and retail sectors give us a great deal of confidence we can successfully deliver this development for Crewe.

“Whilst Marks and Spencer have relocated to Grand Junction Retail Park, we are sure we are on the right path to making sure Crewe has a broader mix of uses that make it an attractive destination for more frequent and longer visits to the town centre by residents from Crewe and the wider area.”

If it gets the go ahead, demolition of the existing site will begin in summer 2018.

Construction of a new bus station will take place first, and the whole development could be completed by Christmas 2020.

Other public realm works considered include the design of pedestrian areas, street furniture, event space and lighting.

And the Market Hall could be re-modelled and refurbished to a high standard, with a focus on independent food retailers, cafes and eateries, as well as having flexibility for themed evening events.

Cllr Paul Bates, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for communities and finance, said: “Sadly, like in similar towns, Crewe’s markets are not fulfilling their potential and it’s clear a new vision is needed for them to survive.

“We want the Market Hall to become a destination for visitors, both during the day and evening, and play an important role in strengthening links between the town centre and Grand Junction Retail Park.”

Royal Arcade Crewe 2

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