The arrival of the new Castle Quay development has moved a step closer with full construction works set to begin.
In the coming weeks, hoarding with new imagery of the development will be installed, allowing the public to see how it will look when completed. A 3D, CGI flythrough of the development has also been produced which is available on the Banbury Guardian website.
The programme of construction works will be phased to minimise the impact on the community, and CDC will be working closely with the contractor to keep the community regularly informed.
The team is already onsite carrying out early preparatory works, and will be based in the former BHS unit for the duration of the construction.
This will not only save tax payers’ money as portable buildings will not have to be rented or moved around the site but will allow construction of the development to begin simultaneously across the site, reducing build time.
Cllr Tony Ilott, lead member for financial management and governance at Cherwell District Council (CDC), said: “With visible works due to begin shortly on this new development, this is a defining moment for Banbury and its residents.
“The council will deliver an exceptional new offering for our town centre, an investment that will allow us to provide the best in class for our residents.
“This includes upgrades to the existing shopping centre so customers and residents can continue to have a pleasant shopping experience.
“As a council, we look forward to working with the community as we reach the delivery phases of the next stage in our town centre’s life.”
When complete the complex will feature restaurants, The Light Cinema, a Premier Inn hotel and a Lidl supermarket.
It will also act as a link between the neighbouring amenities of Spiceball Leisure Centre, The Mill and the existing Castle Quay shopping centre, improving connectivity within the town centre and ensuring a dynamic evening economy for residents and visitors alike.
Cllr Lynn Pratt, lead member for economy, regeneration and property at CDC, said: “The forthcoming Castle Quay 2 development is just one of the projects underway to regenerate the wider Banbury area.
“We are working towards a Banbury that continues to thrive and attracts the best new retailers and restaurants, while meeting the needs of our residents.
“We are proud that we have progressed the plans for Castle Quay 2 and, under the council’s ownership, we will protect our town centre for the future whilst attracting further investment to the area.”
Although there has been little visible on-site activity the last two months have involved crucial, behind the scene preparatory works before full construction can commence.
Improvements to the original design, inherited by the council, have been made to ensure CQ2 better suits the needs of the community.
One such change that will ensure CQ2 remains relevant in years to come is the addition of electric charging points to be installed within the new car parks.
A new pedestrian bridge will be also be installed to improve ease of access from the site into other areas of the town.
The work to the town centre is one of a number of planned developments to improve the area. The Castle Quay 2 build is set to take 100 weeks.