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Lakeside's £9m food court will mean more jobs
12:00pm Wednesday 28th August 2013 in Echo News
NEW plans to invest a further £9million in Lakeside Shopping Centre have been revealed as the retail complex aims to bring more jobs to the area.
The centre, now known as Intu Lakeside, is spending the money to transform its food court area in an effort to keep shoppers in the complex for longer.
The announcement follows plans for a £180million extension, a champagne bar in the atrium and a new leisure section.
Lakeside bosses hope the investment will bring 3,500 jobs to the area.
Paul Lancaster, regional centre director, said: “This part of Essexwill become the destination it once was.
Intu has a long-term plan for Lakeside and we want to take other people with us. Wewant to deliver our vision to create jobs and look after our customers in a world-class way.
“We have people working for us from not just a mile away but the whole of south Essex. Providing more jobs means they will also be able to spend their money in their home towns as well.”
The new food court will incorporate new restaurants, some with their own seating, and smaller units sharing the communal dining area.
Intu is expecting to sign 13 new leases for the food court, with the first names to be announced soon.
The centre has already received outline planning permission for a 325,000 square foot retail extension for 40 new stores and also wants to build a new leisure area for an undisclosed sum.
Final details for the leisure scheme are still under wraps, but it could include sports and activities, plus extra eateries.
Intu hopes to submit a planning application this winter and has already carried out a public consultation, which Mr Lancaster said was very well supported.
He added: “It’s important to remember that Lakeside has been here for 22 years and it has to continue to evolve.”
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