Norwich’s Anglia Square could be demolished as revamp plans, including more than 1,000 new homes, are revealed
PUBLISHED: 11:57 02 November 2016 | UPDATED: 08:38 03 November 2016
Ambitious proposals to revamp Anglia Square, including demolishing the current shopping complex and building more than a thousand homes above new shops and restaurants, can be revealed today.
The owners of the shopping centre have been holding talks with chief officers at City Hall about new plans for a comprehensive redevelopment of the complex.
And they have now submitted a masterplan to the council for what could happen there.
Their “emerging proposals” include:
The demolition of the current Anglia Square, the former stationery office Sovereign House and Gildengate House
More than a thousand homes, to be built above new shop units and a new public square
A new multi-storey car park
The replacement of the existing cinema with a new one at ground level
Better links across the site, to open up entry to the complex from other directions
The developers - Columbia Threadneedle and Weston Homes - acknowledge redeveloping a site of such scale will take a number of years and will need to happen in several phases.
In their masterplan they state: “The provision of an enhanced retail offer will reinforce Anglia Square’s role as a large district centre and ensure it continues to serve the needs of local residents.
This retail role will seek to build upon the existing function of Anglia Square rather than replicating the primary retail functions and fashion-led shopping centres of Castle Mall and intu Chapelfield.”
They say the new homes would “create a new sustainable community within this centrally located site”.
And they said: “The provision of a new public square and an enhanced leisure function for Anglia Square will increase the vibrancy of the area and ensure the new quarter becomes a destination in its own right.”
Along with hopes that new restaurants, bars and shops would be attracted to the new-look square, one of the proposals is to demolish the cinema and replace it with a new one.
Trevor Wicks, who runs the Hollywood Cinema, said: “We clearly would like to stay in Anglia Square. We would welcome the opportunity to move into a new one here and that is an option which has been put to us. We will wait and see what the future holds.”
Before anything can happen, a planning application will need to be lodged with Norwich City Council. The council is expecting that to happen next spring.
Bert Bremner, the city council’s cabinet member for environment and sustainable development, said: “This could be another big boost for the city. I am so thrilled that there’s a possibility that something could happen there.
“The whole area could be on the up. We are talking about a thousand new homes, so that’s at least 2,000 people living right there. It will create a new community.
“We have had three or four occasions in the past when things were put forward and it never happened. We have had hopes before and they have been dashed. This might take 12 years, but personally, I think it’s something really positive.”
Bob Weston, chairman and founder of Weston Homes said: “Weston Homes is delighted to be working with Columbia Threadneedle and Norwich City Council on a new masterplan for Anglia Square
“Together, over the next months we will be presenting our proposals as they emerge to local residents and key stakeholders though local consultations.
“This will assist our discussions with the council, in order to finalise the masterplan, and a specific scheme for a planning application.
“We look forward to sharing our vision and delivering a new community to Norwich.”
What do you think? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or email firstname.lastname@example.org