An imposing hotel could be a landmark feature of a huge new transport interchange in Bolton.

And a futuristic "skylink" - a raised, enclosed glass walkway - could carry passengers from newly-created bus stops to the railway station in Trinity Street.

The interchange plans also include shops, restaurants, cafes, bars and offices.

It will be built on a large triangle of land off Trinity Street currently used for car parking.

Council leader Cllr Cliff Morris said the plans would regenerate that area of the town centre.

"It will be a new gateway to Bolton and will give people a good impression when they arrive here," he said.

"At the moment, there is a lot of derelict land in that area which doesn't create the best image."

While the council is committed to the scheme, proposals are at a very early stage.

Under the council's draft proposals, the current bus station would move from Moor Lane to the new interchange.

The entrance to the interchange would be at the junction of Newport Street and Great Moor Street, where it is suggested the landmark hotel be built on the site of what is now the Factory Food Outlet.

A second landmark building is proposed for the corner of Trinity Street and Bradshawgate. Tall buildings "emphasising the skyline" are suggested as part of the development.

A major public space is proposed at the front of the railway station.

Changes to make the area pedestrian-friendly could see the central reservation in Trinity Street removed, carriageways narrowed and footpaths widened.

A multi-storey car park is also suggested, although a location has yet to be identified. Car parking underneath the bus station is a possibility.

The brief calls for improvements to the railway station, where a fifth platform is planned by Network Rail to ease overcrowding on trains between Bolton and Manchester.

It says "inadequate" toilet facilities could be improved. Passenger information systems and the buffet bar could also be modernised.

The station's landmark clock tower in Newport Street would be retained.

The interchange proposals form part of a £3 billion bid for Government cash for transport improvements, part of which would be paid back by revenue from a congestion charge in Manchester.

But it is not dependent on the bid being successful. Other public funding and private investment could be used.

The council's director of development and regeneration, Keith Davies, said: "We want this to be more than just a transport interchange.

"It is about making sure we maximise commercial development around the site to support the town centre, as well as providing state of the art transport facilities for residents."

Bolton town centre manager, Cathy Savage, added: "This has been in the pipeline for some time and has got to be good for the town centre.

"Putting the bus exchange near the train station will make visiting Bolton easier for people and encourage more people to come into the centre."

The interchange project forms part of wider plans for a Bolton Innovation Zone.

A prospectus in which the council presents its vision for the zone will be published on November 9 in a bid to attract private investment.