Friars Walk, the new 390,000 sq ft retail and leisure destination in Newport, South Wales will officially open its doors at 10 am on 12th November 2015.
Paul Sargent, Chief Executive and co-founder of Queensberry Real Estate said: “We are delighted to announce that Friars Walk will open as scheduled in November.”
“This is an amazing achievement as we set the date over a year ago before even going on site. I must thank all parties involved and a special thanks to Newport City Council and our contractor Bowmer and Kirkland for getting us to this stage.”
“Friars Walk will transform Newport, giving people a reason to return to the city centre. We have a fantastic line up of retailers and restaurants and we estimate that we will receive around 10 million visitors in the first year alone. There is a real buzz and sense of excitement from within the community and we will create an environment that people will want to return to time and time again.”
“It has taken just 4 years to develop the concept, secure funding, find the right tenant mix and build the scheme. It is an amazing success story for both the council and QRE.”
“Friars Walk will be the first retail scheme to be delivered by Queensberry Real Estate since it was formed just 5 years ago. We are also proud to announce we will be fully involved in the ongoing operation and management of the centre”
The scheme is currently 65% let and Friars Walk is set to be one of only 3 shopping centres forecasted to open in the UK in 2015. In addition to this it is one of the country’s most significant regeneration investments to be built and delivered post-recession.
Bob Bright, Leader of Newport City Council said: “To have the opening date for Friars Walk confirmed is another important step in the much anticipated retail and leisure development for the city.
“We know that having a transformed city centre offering retail and leisure has been something that our residents have wanted to see for many years.
“Newport City Council has been instrumental in this development coming to fruition and took the innovative decision to fund the development at the end of 2013, this meant the development could become a reality sooner rather than later.
“This regeneration scheme has transformed the city centre and with the opening in our sight our residents can look forward to a development that will give them big brand shops, restaurants, entertainment and new employment opportunities in the run up to the festive period.
“We hope that this Christmas will be particularly special and one to remember with the opening of the new retail and leisure centre at Friars Walk in the thriving heart of the city.”
Queensberry Real Estate (QRE) confirmed the opening date following a confident discussion with the main contractor Bowmer and Kirkland. QRE took over the site from the council in February 2014 and are now entering the advanced stage of construction. A total delivery programme of only 22 months.
Work is progressing across the entire site, the buildings for key anchor tenants Debenhams and Cineworld are being constructed at pace and in recent months steelwork on the remaining blocks adjacent to Debenhams has started.
Floors and roofs are being formed, staircases and lifts are being installed and the external walls on key buildings underway, and buildings will soon be enclosed and watertight ahead of the tenant fit-out works.