Chester cultural centre gets the green light

The Kier Group has been given planning permission for a new cultural attraction in Chester.

Building work is expected to commence in February, 2015, under Kier Construction’s Northern Division. The firm plans to employ local labour and subcontractors as much as possible.

It is expected that 70% of the work will be done by a local workforce, and 75% of the materials used on the project will be sourced from nearby suppliers. There will be 15 new building-trade apprenticeships available and colleges in the area will also be able to send some of their pupils to the site for hands on training.

The budget for the transformation of the old Odeon building into a state of the art cultural centre is £38m. When it is finished, the facility will include a library, cinema and a theatre.

Inside, the structure will retain its distinctive art deco style, and the original scale and proportions of the interior will be restored. Plans are still being drawn up, but they are expected to be ready for construction to start early next year.

The cultural centre is one of the most significant building projects that the city has seen for decades. Cheshire West and Chester Council is working on a new local strategy, which will result in many more new schemes.

Part of the preparation for the upcoming development of the city is the setting up of a Design Review Panel. Architects in Chester, along with planning officers, landscapers and other construction professionals who sit on the panel, will review the quality of development plans and advise the council’s planning committee.

Posted by Matt Hughes
October 9, 2014

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