£90m bid to make Truro a South West shopping hub
Truro could surpass Plymouth as one of the Westcountry's premium shopping destinations after plans for a near-£100 million retail centre in the Cornish city were unveiled.
Early draft proposals for a shopping centre, with cinema complex and department store, on Pydar Street in the city have been presented to Truro City Council.
Put forward by developers Stanhope and LaSalle Investment Management, with involvement from Cornwall Council, the centre would cost a projected £93 million.
As well as having 250,000sq ft of retail space and a cinema, it would include a 100,000sq ft department store, likely to be Debenhams, another large store, restaurants and 700 parking spaces.
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It is the third big development outlined for the growing city, alongside a plan for a £40m park-and-ride and Cornish food centre, which has gone to judicial review, and the 1,500 home Langarth Farm development.
Truro business improvement district manager Neil Scott said: "The development will put Truro on the map and prevent people from going to the likes of Plymouth. It could become the shopping hub of the South West."
A £6m deal for the three-acre regeneration site on Pydar Street was secured in 2011 by Stanhope and LaSalle but over the past two years the plans have gone cold.
Martyn Chase, from Stanhope, said the developers are working behind the scenes to bring the proposals forward.
He said: "The proposals have the potential to finally realise the site's outstanding potential and deliver a range of benefits to the city centre and the wider Truro area, by increasing the amount of time visitors spend in the city."
But he also said other large-scale retail developments around Truro could put the development at risk.
He added: "Schemes such as that proposed at Coyte Farm (near St Austell) would be a hammer-blow to Truro, making redevelopment of the site and the associated investment unviable."
A spokesman for Cornwall Council said it had met with developers Stanhope to discuss the future of the wider site.
He said: "In due course it is anticipated that a report will be presented to Cabinet with options whereby a comprehensive redevelopment could be delivered, subject to consultation and planning consent."