Connell Bros will start a full demolition programme on Stretford Mall in the coming weeks, with works including improved access, a new entrance, brick-and-metal facades, and two green spaces fronting Chester Road.
The demolition contractor will begin work on the plans by the shopping centre’s owner, M&M Asset Management, which once complete will reduce the size of the mall by around 49,000 sq ft, from 346,000 sq ft.
A large portion of the mall will be demolished, and this area fronting Chester Road has been earmarked as a potential future development site. Once demolition completes, these areas will be grassed and surrounded with a knee-high fence.
The retained elements of the buildings will be re-clad and improved with a mixed brick and metal façade, with the main entrance providing direct access to the main square at the centre of the Mall and designed to give a more active frontage to Chester Road.
M&M said there would be no changes to current access arrangements within the retained mall building, while access to these units will not be impacted while works are ongoing.
O’Briens Pub, at the southern end of the mall, is being retained and will remain open throughout. The renovation works are due to complete by December 2019.
The move by M&M to cut space at the mall follows years of declining footfall, while a number of high-profile retailers have left the site in recent years. These include Wilko, Vodafone, B&M, and Argos.
As of last year, the mall had a vacancy rate of 48%, while footfall fell from 6.1m in 2008 to 3.7m in 2016. However, Stretford Mall has seen a handful of openings in the past three years, with JD Sports and PureGym both taking space.
The redevelopment of Stretford Mall secured planning approval last year, and has been designed by Pozzoni Architects.