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Supermarket at the heart of Baron’s Quay regeneration
REGENERATION of Baron’s Quay will be kick-started by a huge new supermarket, according to a vision that will go before the public from Tuesday.
The new development framework, which is set to be approved by CWAC’s executive group today, Wednesday, includes 118,000 sq ft of food retail space.
This is alongside 205,000 sq ft of non-food shops, 45,000 sq ft of restaurants and cafes and 70,000 sq ft set aside for a cinema and bowling alley.
Geoff Hope-Terry, chairman of the Weaver Valley Partnership, said: “There has been an independent study of Cheshire retail which shows there’s an un-met demand for food and non-food in Northwich.
“If we don’t address that in Baron’s Quay, there will be pressure from other developers to build an out-of-town supermarket, which would be the kiss of death for the town.”
Clr Herbert Manley, CWAC’s executive member for prosperity, said: “If we get it right, by having food retail here it will help to regenerate town.”
The development is designed to include ‘retail loops’ so that shoppers will pass other shops on their way to the supermarket and will be drawn into the Witton Street area.
Mr Hope-Terry said: “People will come down to areas in front of the supermarket which will lead naturally to other retail loops.
“It’s an easy trap to fall into having a supermarket in a town but it’s self-contained. We’ve designed it to get away from that.”
He added: “It’s potentially a very big site but there wouldn’t be the demand for non-food retail to fill the whole area.”
Clr Manley said that any supermarket wanting to take up the site, which would be the first phase of the Baron’s Quay development, would need to prove itself.
“Supermarkets need to be engaged with the local community,” he said.
“When we come to looking at which supermarket will take that site there will be parameters – what will that supermarket do to enhance the community in Northwich?”