Owner M&M Asset Management has filed an application with Trafford Council to demolish part of the Stretford Shopping Mall as it looks to reverse the fortunes of the struggling centre.
The proposals, designed by Pozzoni Architects, centre on the Chester Street Mall part of the site, at its southern end. The pub unit within the southern part of the site will be retained.
In all, 49,000 sq ft of retail space could be removed from the 346,000 sq ft mall. New facades will be introduced for the remaining building, with parking areas remodelled.
The site is classed as Town Centre in planning terms, meaning that development of the cleared site could include residential.
In the planning statement submitted for the scheme, advisor Planning Works describes the project as more important to the centre’s future than the recent redevelopment of the mall’s western end, now anchored by an Aldi supermarket.
The 1960s-built centre occupies a prominent 12-acre site fronting the key Chester Road and was in receivership between March 2010 and July 2014 before being picked up by M&M.
Recent years have seen national retailers including Wilko, TJ Hughes, Vodafone, B&M and Argos depart the scheme, which is 48% vacant at present, with a quarter of the units described as “major retail space” empty.
Footfall fell from 6.1m in 2008 to 3.7m in 2016, with a slight rally provided by Aldi towards the very end of that period. JD Sports and PureGym have also opened there since M&M’s takeover.