Sefton Council leader Ian Maher defended the authority’s decision to buy the shopping centre for £32.5m in 2017 but revealed it is now worth only £14.24m.
“The decision to acquire the Strand Shopping Centre in 2017 to act as the catalyst for regeneration has proven to be the correct one,” Cllr Maher said.
“As would be expected, there has been a reduction in the value of the Strand shopping centre complex, to the current figure of £14.24m.”
The Strand anchors Sefton’s strategy to regenerate Bootle town centre but plans to redevelop it have stuttered.
In February, the council blamed the “severe impacts” of the pandemic for the delays in developing a business case for the project.
Sefton bought the 400,000 sq ft shopping complex from Ellandi in 2014 so that it could have more control over the future regeneration of Bootle.
Cllr Maher said: “The valuation [of the Strand] does not impact on the council’s financial position, but the acquisition illustrates how Sefton Council is firmly committed to creating opportunities for local people to influence the future of the site and the town centre.”
“Achieving this means having the vision, ambition and confidence to take the long-term view and being open and honest about how we intend to achieve it.”
Sefton Council is hopeful the government will approve a Levelling Up Fund bid of £14.5m to redevelop an area next to the Strand into Canalside, an outdoor leisure and events space.
The bid also features plans to create a flying theatre visitor attraction at the site.