Friday, 2 September 2011

Bradford

There are old city centres, new city centres, smart city centres, scruffy city centres and there is Bradford city centre.
This photograph was taken November 2010.

The hole should be Westfield a shopping and leisure complex

Demolition on the site started on 18 March 2004 and by mid 2006 the site was empty apart from a large pile of rubble. It was originally hoped that the complex would be open by late 2007 (with construction commencing in early 2006), but with a lack of anchor tenants and with many workmen still working on Westfield Derby, the start date for construction was pushed back. The delays lead to Bradford Council threatening to take back control of the site from Westfield, if progress wasn't made.

Potted history as follows:-

·                    20 November, 2007 - Westfield installed staff cabins and began preparatory work prior to beginning construction.
·                    Also in November 2007, Westfield apply to change the planning permission to include a hotel.
·                    August 2008 - No formal start date for construction yet announced, as Westfield are waiting for more 'anchor tenants' to sign up for shop space; currently half of the total shop space has been let. The developers have pledged to start work 'as soon as possible' and preparatory work on the site was due to be completed by mid-August 2008.
·                    January 2009 - site consists of excavated foundations but nobody working on site and all staff entrances chained up.
·                    March 2009 - announced that work on the site is 'on hold' until 2010 due to the recession.
·                    20 May 2009 - Bradford West Member of Parliament Marsha Singh raised the lack of progress on the site during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons. Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, stated that he would be willing to hold a meeting with Westfield to discuss the issue
·                    February 2010 - Bradford Council announces plan to convert part of the site into a temporary park
·                    April 2010 - Work starts on the temporary park
·                    June 2011- Westfield to submit new revised plans for a smaller centre containing 77 shops

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