Westfield to restart the renovation of the Bradford shopping centre


Westfield to restart the renovation of the Bradford shopping centre


The construction of the stalled shopping centre as a result of the 2008 financial crisis is to be restarted in January.


The Australian property developer, Westfield, has made a commitment to start again the £260m Bradford Broadway development in the centre of the Yorkshire, despite selling the site on to the investment group, Meyer Bergman.


The site, nicknamed as “Bradford Hole”, acted as a symbol of the recession in the UK. The Broadway development was temporarily halted in 2008 by the developer, as there were concerns about whether there would be enough demand amongst retailers to occupy the entire shopping centre.


Despite that, the firm has managed to let more than 50 percent of the 570,000 sq ft centre, which includes more than 70 shops, with a 106,000 sq ft Debenhams department store and a 63,000 sq ft Marks & Spencer as anchor retailers, as well as 70 additional shops, restaurants and cafes, including major high street retailers Next, River Island, Topshop, Topman and Sainsbury’s.


The scheme will create 1,500 jobs over its construction phase, while the shopping centre will create 2,500 jobs upon its opening expected for Christmas 2015.

Prime Minister, David Cameron, said: “Projects like these stand as a great example to others to show that the regional growth fund has been used to attract the necessary private sector investment to deliver significant and positive change in our cities.


He added: "Westfield has delivered on its commitment to help regenerate Bradford and to build the Broadway scheme, contributing to the Government’s growth agenda in the UK.”


Michael Gutman, Westfield Managing Director UK/Europe and New Markets commented: “Westfield is delighted to announce the start of construction having remained steadfastly committed to delivering the Bradford development following cessation of work in 2008 as a result of the global financial crisis.


“Westfield has worked intensively with Bradford Council, the Government and Meyer Bergman to attract new retailers, create new jobs and ensure that this development is built for the city and the people of Bradford.”


Photo: BBC