Belfast Telegraph

Expansion of Abbey Centre gets green light

By Lesley Houston

The Abbey Centre and surrounding retail hub have been given the green light to extend by up to 10,000 square metres.

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan announced planning approval for the expansion plans at the Abbeycentre District Centre in Newtownabbey including a near 4,000 square metre development in the Abbey Centre.

The scheme will see the shopping centre expand by 3,872sq m of floorspace, involving the merger of four existing units to create one new, larger retail unit.

The adjacent Abbey Retail Park has been earmarked for a 4,500sq m redevelopment of two former units into four.

A vacant site in the area will also be transformed into four new units including restaurant/coffee shops of 1,200sq m.

The vacant site housed Petworld, Samuel Johnston Ltd, and Budget DIY before they were demolished.

Mr Durkan said the move was a "real boost for Newtownabbey".

"These approvals are to be welcomed as they regenerate previously developed sites and assist the expansion of existing shopping centres which will also bring construction jobs in the short term."

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