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Plans submitted for multi-million pound St Thomas Square revamp
3:00pm Thursday 3rd October 2013 in News
THE long-awaited transformation of derelict town centre site has edged closer after a developer submitted a planning application for a leisure and shopping complex.
Orbit Developments has drawn up blueprints for the former St Thomas Square site, off Westfield Street.
It follows a decision by St Helens Council to sell a portion of the site it owned to the developer.
The land, which some argue is among the town’s worst eyesores, has been subject to many planning proposals that have fallen by the wayside over the past decade.
When the Star revealed in the spring that there was fresh optimism over the development some readers met it with cynicism.
The planning application seeks the construction of a complex that would include a gym, restaurants, shops and parking.
Fitness chain Pure Gym confirmed to the Star earlier this year that it was to locate there.
Community leaders met news of Orbit’s scheme with caution.
Jimmy Devlin, of Greenbank tenants and residents association, said: “At this stage we are trying to establish whether it differs from similar plans from another developer that went in years ago.
“Those included apartments – but this doesn’t seem to.
“We are hopeful something will be done with the land. It has become such an eyesore that we want to see it developed.
“Given it has become such as mess we’re surprised that the council never looked at landscaping it.
“It would be nice if there was something to benefit the community. On the St Thomas’s site there was once an office for tenants but it was never replaced when it was knocked down.”
If the development – on the other side of the dual carriageway from the Cineworld cinema – finally goes ahead it would bring significant investment to the town centre Earlier this year.