Blackpool's Central Station site deal '˜on the brink'

Town hall bosses say they are on the brink of drafting agreements for the development of Blackpool's Central Station site as a new leisure destination for the resort.

Wednesday, 27th June 2018, 1:35 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th June 2018, 1:38 pm
The Central Station site
The Central Station site

Investors met with council chiefs last month to set out their proposals for the site, now named the Central Leisure Quarter.

In his report to full council, council leader Coun Simon Blackburn said the plans included ‘world class’ new attractions including some which will be the first of their kind in the UK.

Following successful discussions, contracts are set to be drafted for the scheme which has been kept under wraps since 2016 when the council entered into an exclusivity agreement with an un-named developer.

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Simon Blackburn

Coun Blackburn adds: “On May 21, the development team was invited to give a presentation to the council’s leadership team on their proposals for the site.

“The proposals presented were aimed at meeting the aspirations of the council for a major leisure development befitting of Blackpool’s rich history and heritage and include a number of world class attractions, some of which will be the first in the UK.

“The development would also seek to replace the loss of car parking within the town centre and would be appealing to a wide variety of people, from seasonal visitors to local residents.

“Most importantly, the scheme would play a catalytic role in the continuing revitalisation of Blackpool’s visitor economy, providing a wide range of employment opportunities and regeneration for the benefit of the local community.”

Coun Blackburn said the council and developer agreed to continue to work towards the next phase of the scheme and “commence drafting out the contractual terms.”

These will then be further scrutinised by the council prior to finalising legal agreements, at which stage full details of the proposals will be announced.

The exclusivity deal was signed in November 2016 following a visit by council leaders to the IAAPA (International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions) conference in Orlando, Florida.

Coun Blackburn and director of place Alan Cavill also attended the conference last year.

The police station, which currently occupies part of the land, which is also occupied by the Central Car Park, is due to move to its new site in Marton in July.

A feasibility study is currently underway to consider a number of potential sites in and around the Blackpool area for the relocation of the magistrates courts which are also linked up on the police station site.