£50m retail centre in Newtownards set to create 400 posts
Environment minister Alex Attwood has given the go-ahead to a £50m retail development at the historic Castlebawn site in Newtownards.
The 20,000 sq metre development is expected to create 220 construction jobs and 410 full and part-time employment positions.
It will straddle the Ards Town Centre boundary, featuring a mall created by restoring a terrace of 19th century listed buildings on Court Street. They are part of an Area of Townscape Character but have become run down.
The minister said the scheme will also restore public access to the historic Bawn Wall, a Scheduled Monument.
Developers Castlebawn Ltd had sought outline planning permission for a new retail development and associated car parking, landscaping and associated works, along with the retention and redevelopment of listed buildings within the town centre.
There are plans to develop up to 13 retail units on the backlands of Castle Street terrace and a further eight retail units within the Bawn Wall.