The £50 million Hednesford Gateway town centre development has reached another milestone after Tesco committed to opening a major food store at the site.
Construction of the 80,000 sq ft store will get underway over the next few weeks and it will be open in time for Christmas 2012 trading.
The Tesco store will boast covered parking and is part of the 9.1 acre redevelopment of the Victoria Street area of the town, a primarily retail-led scheme. The store will sit alongside a terrace of non-food retail units and a retail kiosk, which together will deliver 38,000 sq ft of new commercial space.
Construction began on the comprehensive town centre scheme in April after developer St. Modwen was granted planning approval by Cannock Chase Council.
Oliver King, Development Executive for Tesco, commented: “We’re very proud to be a part of this exciting town centre regeneration project. We’ve worked hard with the support of the local authority and key stakeholders in the town to get to a position to deliver a project which we believe will bring major economic, environmental and social benefits to Hednesford.”
The new Tesco and the redevelopment of the Victoria Street area is the next phase of the Hednesford Gateway scheme and will create around 600 jobs. The phase also includes a new drill hall, which has been completed, and a new 10,000 sq ft community facility to replace the existing Aquarius Community/Dance Hall. This high quality facility will be positioned close to the realigned Victoria Street which will feature specially erected bus stands. Works on this are expected to begin over the next couple of months with delivery in line with the remainder of the development.
Phase One of the project is close to completion. A purpose-built building for the Hollywood Bingo Club has been handed over and the construction of retail units facing Market Street is due to be completed in the middle of 2012. The retail units on Rugeley Road have been completed and St. Modwen is in discussion with potential occupiers.
St. Modwen development surveyor Mark Watkins said: “It’s fantastic news that Tesco has committed to opening a major store at the Hednesford Gateway scheme. This and the other new shopping and leisure facilities will transform Hedensford town centre.
“As with all construction projects of this scale, the works have resulted in some minor disruption to car parking and infrastructure but we have striven to keep this to a minimum. We would like to thank the people of Hednesford for their patience and the support they have shown to the construction teams working on site.”
Glenn Watson, Economic Development Manager at Cannock Chase Council commented: “This is excellent news for Hednesford and is testament to the strength of the partnership between the Council, St. Modwen and the town itself. The fact that we have now secured this commitment from Tesco, despite difficult trading conditions, is an indication of the commitment we have achieved from all the key players to ensure that the regeneration work is completed as programmed by the end of this year”.