St. Modwen Unveils Its Plans For Kirkby Town Centre

REGENERATION specialist St. Modwen has set out its plans for the future of Kirkby in a public exhibition this week – bringing the redevelopment of the Town Centre a step closer. The development plans pave the way for a wider more significant change. The proposal will see the strengthening of the existing Town Centre, a new supermarket, additional shops, car parking and a new leisure development. The proposal would also boost the local economy, create new jobs, as well as bringing more shoppers and businesses to Kirkby – transforming it into a destination local people can enjoy. To achieve this, St. Modwen plans to:
  • Carry out improvements that will complement and enhance Kirkby Town Centre
  • Increase the choice and type of shops for local people
  • Provide accommodation that meets the needs and requirements of modern retailers, making Kirkby an attractive place to do business
  • Ensure that any new development is fully integrated into the existing Town Centre, with improved pedestrian links, so that the whole area benefits from any new development
  • Improved leisure amenities which would include restaurants and a cinema on the site of the old Kirkby Library
  • Create pockets of landscaping and green spaces, including a new area of public realm
  • Provide a temporary car park to the south of Cherryfield Drive to serve existing shops and local amenities, while the retail development is under construction.
The outline scheme has already seen significant interest from a number of national retailers and St. Modwen is in advanced talks with food retailers. Until these talks are complete and legal contracts exchanged St. Modwen is not in a position to announce the name of the supermarket. Members of the project team will be available at the public exhibition to provide more details about the scheme and answer questions local people may have. There will also be opportunity for locals to offer feedback before the plans are developed further and a planning application is submitted to Knowsley Council for consideration. Following St. Modwen’s £35.8m acquisition in November 2015 the team has been working closely with the local authority to develop plans for the Town Centre. A development agreement was signed earlier in the year, which set out St. Modwen’s ambitions for Kirkby. Steven Knowles, North West Regional Director for St. Modwen, said: “Our plans for Kirkby provide us with an opportunity to develop a Town Centre that the people of Kirkby deserve and have been waiting a long time for. “We strongly believe that our proposal will strengthen and enhance the existing Town Centre, increase the offer for shoppers by bringing new shops to Kirkby and create jobs for local people. We also have the potential to include a cinema and restaurants for local people to enjoy. We are looking forward to announcing the name of the supermarket operator soon. “The public exhibition is a really important part of our community engagement on the scheme, it provides an opportunity for people to come and view the plans, find out more information and give us your feedback. We will then consider the feedback before the proposals are finalised and submitted to Knowsley Council. “St. Modwen has made a long term commitment to Kirkby and since we acquired the Town Centre we have made it our priority to drive through immediate improvements. Working alongside Knowsley Council, we now have the opportunity to make more of a significant change.” Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, Cllr Mike Murphy, said: “I’m delighted that St. Modwen has brought forward these plans for Kirkby Town Centre as they bring our long-awaited retail and leisure developments another step closer. “The council and our partners have already completed a huge number of significant developments in Kirkby in recent years – the Kirkby Centre, Kirkby Leisure Centre, the new Kirkby Market, St Chad’s Public Health Centre, new housing, public art and improvements to the public realm in the Town Centre have all had a very positive impact on the town – for the benefit of Kirkby residents and businesses. Like all Kirkby residents, I now look forward to seeing the delivery of our new supermarket, shops, cinema and restaurant to confirm that Kirkby is a place on the up.”  Mike Matthews, Kirkby Town Centre Manager – St. Modwen, added: “St. Modwen has an excellent reputation for managing successful Town Centre schemes and retail led developments. We have a real opportunity here to put Kirkby Town Centre back on the map. We are excited to share our redevelopment plans with the community.” The public exhibition will take place on Friday 21 October, 10am to 3pm and Saturday 22 October, 9.30am to 1pm at 17 St Chad’s Parade, Kirkby Town Centre. If you are unable to attend the exhibition, visit: www.kirkbytowncentre.com where you can view the plans and submit your feedback.