Wednesday 17 December 2014

Sheffield City Council is now seeking to engage with a strategic development partner to help deliver the much-anticipated new retail quarter in the city centre.

This brings plans closer to realisation and on target to deliver the first phase of a new scheme during 2019.

The announcement comes after six months of intensive work with a new team of expert advisors, and detailed research into consumer trends and regional demand, mapped against existing and pipeline provisions in Sheffield.

The result is an exciting retail and leisure-led scheme combined with office and residential provision to provide a more mixed use destination.

The new scheme will link the Moor to Fargate through Barker’s Pool, to deliver improved economic benefits to the city as a whole.

Councillor Leigh Bramall, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Business, Skills and Development said: “The new scheme for the retail quarter will bring unity to Sheffield city centre, creating one continuous link from The Moor through and up to Fargate.

“This will accelerate growth in the rest of the city centre, increasing the performance of the existing retail offer and making the city centre a much more attractive shopping destination.”

The scheme will also facilitate more modern methods of shopping. While physical retailing remains fundamental, the function of shops is changing.

For example, the mixed-use scheme will devote more “floor space” for leisure and also embrace an increased demand for fast and casual dining.

The new plans have already been met with enthusiasm by retailers looking for additional trading space.

Coun Bramall said: “We felt that it would be appropriate to test the market and gather valuable feedback from those that would potentially operate and trade from the space.”

Sheffield City Council is now entering into the procurement process to appoint a strategic development partner. The means of delivering re-development in a city centre is a complex process and the city needs to work with the right development partner.

It is envisaged that the new scheme concept will be progressed to public consultation next month when the plans will be revealed.

Coun Bramall added: “The people of Sheffield have been waiting a long time for a more attractive retail destination in the city centre and we are pleased to progress to a stage where we are building real momentum and look forward to sharing our detailed ideas through consultation in the New Year.”