Out of town shopping scheme to bring 130 jobs - but what about the city centre ?

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Plans for a shopping development that will bring 130 jobs to the city, are about to be submitted to Wakefield Council.

West Register (Property Investments) Ltd want to build a discount food store, several other shops, a coffee shop and a gastro pub on part of the sprawling site at Snow Hill close to Newton Bar, as well as 229 car parking spaces.

And it hopes to have its shopping development completed by the end of next year, if planning permission is granted.

Nick Denton of retail property specialists, ReesDenton, the scheme’s commercial agents, said: “This development would provide much needed local retail facilities and create a significant number of new jobs.

“Residents in this area have very limited choice, so many people have to travel out of the area to shop. The new scheme would provide access to a range of shops for the existing and planned local community.”

Outline planning permission has already been granted to Yorkcourt Properties Ltd for a neighbouring part of the Snow Hill site, which will house 1,234 homes, other shops ,leisure facilities and create 3,000 jobs.

Colin Mackie, managing director of Yorkcourt Properties Ltd, which also owns the nearby Paragon Business Park, said groundworks had already begun on their part of the site, which will be developed in stages over the next 10 years.

Plans for a new roundabout, which will serve the two developments, were approved by Wakefield Council’s planning department in December last year, and a 400-space park and ride scheme is also in the pipeline.

But the Express Facebook page was inundated with mixed comments on the subject, with some welcoming news of new jobs and others who were concerned about the impact on the city centre.

Denise Green said: “More shops, why bother when there are loads empty in town.”

Barbara Winston, manager of The Ridings Shopping Centre, said: “Anything that dilutes from the city centre is not a good thing. Retail is hard enough at the moment.”