Plans to turn Coventry city centre into a £200 million designer shopping centre, originally given a target date of 2020, could be accelerated.
The £200 million-pound City Centre South (CCS) development project could be sped up as the council have been given the opportunity to purchase early leaseholds, such as for the Coventry Point tower.
The 560,000 square-foot scheme was given planning consent in 2012 and will include shops, restaurants, a cinema, a new water park and a health spa also to be located next to the City Centre South.
The development will also bring a major department store, a multi-storey car park, private, rented residential and student accommodation, and a hotel.
Recent developments include a £98.8million grant from the West Midlands Combined Authority towards the cost of the project, which includes any third-party purchases.
2,000 jobs are expected to be created with up to 50 retailers opening their doors in the transformed district, which is expected to generate £20 million a year of extra income in the city.
Post-war buildings are set to be demolished as part of the regeneration, including the 14-story Coventry Point office block. This will make way for the rejuvenation scheme set to cover an area the size of Solihull’s Touchwood development.
With the opportunity to quicken land assembly work by purchasing long-term leaseholds in Coventry Point, the tower could now be demolished ahead of schedule.
Cabinet member for jobs and regeneration, Councillor Jim O’Boyle, told the Coventry Telegraph: “We want to revive the city centre and bring more local people and visitors.
“I’m hoping that colleagues will now also support the option to purchase a large part of the land in the City Centre South area.
“This will be an important step in helping to bring the city centre regeneration plans to life.”
With the new department store intended as a major landmark, the site will connect to Bull Yard and will be bordered by Upper Precinct, Greyfriars Road and Warwick Road.
Coventry City Council leader, George Duggins, has said: “When you look at all the changes happening around Coventry and see the ambitious plans for City Centre South, it shows there are great times ahead for our city.”