Time Square go-ahead for university

Warrington Council has signed off a change of use application, allowing the development of a “shop front” for the University of Chester at the town centre mixed-use scheme.

The 15,400 sq ft project is part of the university’s plans for town centre provision, as it seeks to relocate teaching provision from the Padgate campus, now deemed unfit for purpose, over the next year.

Terms were agreed in principle at the Time Square development in January, with the purchase of the 23,000 sq ft Mersey Bank House in Barbauld Street following in March – this will house the majority of teaching space in education and nursing.

The Time Square space, designed by 5plus Architects, is to be fitted out in time to be operational from mid-September 2021. It will host an information point for members of the public to engage with what the university offers.

Also on offer will be bookable learning space for students with laptops and digital resources, breakout spaces for seminars and a small lecture space for talks and events, including offers from educational partners and business support programmes.

Muse Developments is the development manager for the £142m Time Square development, delivered by Warrington & Co, the council’s regeneration agency.

The project features a 13-screen Cineworld cinema and 70,000 sq ft of bars and restaurants, and is home to Warrington Council’s 103,000 sq ft new office and a 1,160-space car park.

The Botanist was the first hospitality operator to sign, in December 2019, with family entertainments group Gravity Active taking the space formerly occupied by the relocated market in summer 2020. 

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