Connswater Shopping Centre in east Belfast is to undergo a £6m expansion creating 50 new jobs, it was announced today.
The 40,000 sq ft extension to the complex, which is anchored by Tesco and Dunnes Stores, is due to be completed by Christmas.
Owners Kilultagh Estates said the centre would be transformed, creating a " fresh and exciting" place to shop, eat and relax, with the entrance being revamped by a modern glass structure.
Centre manager Gerry Monaghan said: "The centre is undergoing a refurbishment programme to ensure our customers get the best service and thoroughly enjoy their shopping experience."
Despite the disruption, existing retailers will continue to trade during the refurbishment, and Mr Monaghan said dislocation would be minimised.
The revitalised shopping centre will boast an additional four self-contained retail units and include a food-court on its new first floor.
The food-court will provide a mix of cuisines from five high street food brands, which the owners said would add an extra dimension to the " Connswater customer experience".
An additional deck has already been added to the car park, creating a total of 850 free customer car parking spaces, including family friendly, disabled and taxi pick-up spaces adjacent to the shopping centre.
Tanya McKeown, from Colliers CRE, the managing agents for Connswater, said: " We are committed to working with Killultagh Estates to develop Connswater and retain its position as the leading local shopping centre.
"Connswater will be transformed into a high quality shopping destination with an improved retail and food offer.
"The extensive catchment population and high-quality customer profile are just two factors which have allowed Connswater to attract an excellent mix of major high street retailers and food brands."
Existing outlets include Argos, Woolworths and Dunnes.