The direction of travel for the troubled £300m Northgate Development is switching away from retail towards more housing, high quality public areas, leisure and cultural attractions.
This appears to be the latest thinking after concerned business leaders recently met new Cheshire West and Chester Council chief executive Andrew Lewis and deputy chief executive Charlie Seward.
The informal meeting was organised by Chester Growth Partnership.
Representing the private sector were Tim Kenney of kenneymoore and Guy Butler from Glenbrook who are spearheading the ‘Northgate Remastered’ campaign.
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Northgate Development could feature more housing as retail sector struggles
Andrew Lewis has just been appointed chief executive of Cheshire West and Chester Council, replacing Gerald Meehan, who is retiring early on grounds of ill health.
The meeting comes in the wake of an open letter signed by more than 120 business people calling for a major rethink of the city centre regeneration project, which was dealt a major blow after House of Fraser pulled out as the anchor tenant.
A joint statement was issued later which read: “All agreed that the development is of huge importance to the city and wider borough, and represented a unique opportunity to deliver growth and jobs. It was also agreed that the proposed development needed to reflect recent fundamental changes in the business environment for retail, and increase the relative importance within the site for good quality housing, leisure and cultural attractions, and high quality public realm.
“The opportunity to create a new covered market, rivalling the best in the world, was enthusiastically supported.”
Source: The Chester Chronicle