Maple Grove Developments, part of the Eric Wright Group, has been selected by Blackburn with Darwen Council as the preferred development partner for the former markets site in Blackburn town centre.
Since the demolition of the covered market building in 2013, the 3.75-acre site has been used as surface parking. Designed by DLA Architecture, the proposal is for a retail-led mixed-use scheme that will add to the town’s offer by providing a small number of large retail floorplates. Brady’s has been appointed by MGD as letting agent.
The project signals the next stage in Maple Grove’s work with the local authority, the developer having delivered a first office block at Cathedral Square, with a second commercial building, featuring 30,000 sq ft of offices and 5,000 sq ft of retail, securing planning consent in January this year.
The business also acts as development manager for plots on the Wainwright Way link road, securing two deals in March this year.
Blackburn with Darwen declared its intention to release the site, one of six plots around Blackburn town centre earmarked in a supplementary planning document as critical to the town’s future, in September 2018.
Andrew Dewhurst, director at Maple Grove Developments, said: “We’re very pleased to have been chosen as preferred developer. This is a large and prominent town centre site and the decision taken by Blackburn with Darwen Council allows us to move forward with our designs in liaison with specific retailers. On the back of the Cathedral Quarter development we again look forward to working closely with the council to bring forward another major regeneration project.”
Simon Jones, growth programme director at Blackburn with Darwen, added: “Maple Grove was selected following a competitive tender and the council looks forward to working with the developer developing a quality retail scheme which supports the town centre.”