Public urged to have their say as initial plans for £300m Blackpool Central entertainment complex are revealed
The public is being invited to have their say on the first part of plans for a £300m entertainment complex in the heart of Blackpool.
Blackpool Central is set to include an indoor theme park, family rides, and a new public square for live events, such as music concerts.
The complex’s backers, Nikal Ltd and Media Invest Entertainment, say it could bring an additional 600,000 visitors to the resort every year, and create up to 1,000 new jobs.
Now a consultation has been launched on plans for the first phase of the huge new attraction, which includes a new 1,300 space multi-storey car park (MSCP), and will restore the existing heritage buildings on the site, off the Golden Mile, to create a new Heritage Quarter.
Develpers plan to turn the Grade II-listed former King Edward VII Picture House into a new ‘artisan food hall’, while the King Edward VII pub will be refurbished into a new pub and hotel.
The scheme is a key part of the Blackpool Town Deal, to drive the regeneration of the town and aid the post-Covid economic recovery. The Town Deal is supported by £39.5m of government funding from the £3.6bn Towns Fund. Nikal and Media Invest Entertainment say they are “working closely with Blackpool Council to unlock the Blackpool Central redevelopment opportunity, which will be the largest single investment in Blackpool in over a century”.
Richard Fee, the chairman of Nikal Ltd, said: “We’re looking to create a world-class leisure destination that will add to Blackpool’s current offer and attract hundreds of thousands of new visitors every year.
“This planning application for the enabling phase will allow us to deliver the new multi-storey car park and the Heritage Quarter, where we’re planning to create a new artisan food hall. We want to understand and listen to what the local community, local businesses and visitors to Blackpool think of this game-changing opportunity. Please get in touch and help us define and shape the scheme.”
“We look forward to hearing what our community has to say about this project, which has the potential to provide a significant boost to our economy, increase footfall in the area to the benefit of local shops, guest houses, hotels and businesses, and bring steady, year-round jobs to the people of Blackpool.”
The site is located on the south-western edge of Blackpool town centre, bounded by Central Drive, Bonny Street, New Bonny Street and Chapel Street.
Once the world’s busiest train station, Blackpool Central Railway Station closed in 1964 and has since been used for car parking and occasionally hosts outdoor events such as the annual Blackpool Illuminations switch on. The wider site has seen a number of uses over the years, including as a police station and law courts. The law courts will be relocated by Blackpool Council in an unrelated project.
The consultation will be open until Wednesday, May 26 and local people can get involved by:
• Filling in the questionnaire in the newsletter that is being distributed to over 9,600 addresses in the area
• Visiting the website blackpoolcentral.com, which includes an online questionnaire
• Signing up on the website to attend a live webinar and Q&A on Wednesday 12th May 2021, 6pm-7pm
• Calling 0800 689 1095 or emailing [email protected]
• Writing to Freepost HAVE YOUR SAY
• Follow on social: Blackpool Central (Facebook/Instagram) and @bpoolcentral1 (Twitter)
Following the consultation, Nikal Ltd and Media Invest Entertainment expect to submit a planning application to Blackpool Council in the summer.
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