WORK on the £14 million redevelopment of Bolton’s Market Place - with the addition of restaurants and a cinema to the shopping centre - will start next month.
Wates Construction has been appointed to carry out the work, which will see the creation of a 30,000 sq ft nine-screen cinema complex on top of the shopping centre.
The firm will also restore the Victorian vaults under the centre, creating new restaurant, bar and retail spaces.
Construction is expected to reach completion in spring, 2015, following a 44-week build programme.
Tony Shenton, business unit director for Wates Construction North West, said: “Plans to develop the Market Place have understandably enjoyed widespread support and this is evidence that the scheme is set to become an excellent leisure destination for the people of Bolton.
“We are currently preparing to start construction alongside the fully operational shopping centre and we will remain focused on engaging with local businesses and customers to ensure minimal disruption is caused.”
Tim Vaughan, chief executive of Moorgarth, owners of Market Place Shopping Centre, said: “When we put forward the vision for the future of the Market Place we knew that we would be expected to deliver the goods as quickly as possible, and rightly so.
“Now we have the green light from Bolton Council, we are delighted to be working with Wates to get the construction under way to deliver a high quality asset which will create a much needed nighttime family-friendly economy that everyone in Bolton and beyond can enjoy.”
Bolton’s planning committee gave the scheme the go-ahead earlier this month, despite strong objections and the threat of legal action from rival centre Crompton Place, which has also lodged plans to build its own cinema.
In addition to the cinema plan, Moorgarth received listed building consent to create new shop fronts in the Grade-II listed Market Hall, relocate listed telephone boxes in Bridge Street and create a new atrium roof at the junction between the Market Hall and the North Mall.
The Light Cinemas, an independent operator, will run the Market Place cinema, while Crompton Place says it has had interest from major operators Odeon and Reel.