Long-awaited plans for Preston city center renovation with a £40 million cinema and leisure complex have been signed off on by Eric Wright, who will oversee the project. Preston City Council has given Eric Wright Group-owned development partner Maple Grove Developments permission to begin work on the Animate leisure project.
Site preparation will begin in the coming month on the site of the former indoor market. Full construction will begin in early 2023. Upon completion, the city will include an eight-screen cinema and bowling alley. Furthermore, it will have five new restaurants and bars, a street-food hub, a car park, and a new public square.
The Preston City Council is funding the scheme. This is with help from the Towns Fund and the Preston, South Ribble, and Lancashire City Deal.
Preston city center renovation project will offer varied leisure and cultural spaces
“Over the coming months, the residents of Preston will start to witness a lot more activity on site as the diggers. This is as well as heavy machinery move in and the build begins to take shape,” Preston City Council Leader Councillor Matthew Brown said.
“The high street and how we use it are radically changing. Thus, we are building resilience by supporting the retail sector with varied leisure and cultural offer. Animate is being funded and preserved as a strategic public asset by the Council. We are convinced of the benefits that this project will bring.”
The Preston city center renovation scheme was designed by Manchester architect LeachRhodesWalker. Additionally, Waterman served as both M&E and structural engineer. This is one of six major projects planned under the £200 million Harris Quarter Towns Fund Investment Programme. Consequently, the city received a £20.9 million grant from the government’s national Towns Fund initiative in March.