Detailed planning consent has been granted to Widnes Regeneration, the joint venture between St Modwen Properties and Halton Borough Council, for its £10m Venture Fields leisure scheme.
The waterfront family leisure centre will comprise a five-screen cinema, an ice-rink, 24-lane bowling alley, restaurants and associated retail.
Richard Bakes, development manager of St Modwen, said: "It is good news that the project has been given this further boost. We still have a couple of issues to settle with the Environment Agency prior to starting on site. We are working closely with Halton Borough Council to achieve this as soon as possible and indeed it is only that close co-operation that has enabled us to progress this project so far.
"The complex nature of the issues involved on this site would have daunted the faint-hearted but the encouragement and support we have received from the council has kept the project going, leading to the expectation of an early start on site."
Building work will now start in 2008.