A planning application for a redevelopment of the shopping centre that sits at the heart of Durham City centre has been lodged. 

The plans, submitted to Durham County Council by Citrus Group and Galliard Homes, consists of shops, leisure uses, a new public square, student housing and a hotel.

This follows a public consultation last summer, leading to some further design development. 

The developers hope to create a "mixed-use landmark development  which will breathe new life into the fading shopping centre and support the vitality and viability of the City Centre as a whole."

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Work at the nearby Millburngate development has ground to a halt,  with the council and developers pleading with each other to move forward with plans for the multi-million-pound site. 

James Taylor, Regional Director at Citrus Group commented: “After 15 months of work, we are very pleased to have submitted this complex planning application.

"It has been a productive journey, engaging with many stakeholders in and around the City, to evolve this development project into what it is today.

"We believe we have balanced the many competing needs which result in a scheme which will be a real positive for the City.

"We look forward to continuing this journey through the planning process, and seeing it come to fruition”. 

Located between Elvet Bridge and Market Square and overlooking the River Wear with extensive views of the historic castle and cathedral., the proposed scheme will provide retail space to meet "the future diverse needs of a mix of independents and national retailers."

The 400 space lower level multi-storey car park will be retained.

New walkways, landscaping and pedestrian seating offering views across the River Wear will be constricted if plans are approved, and the square, set to be the centre piece of the scheme, will accommodate the main entrances to the hotel and student accommodation as well as a selection of busy shops, restaurants and leisure facilities.

The square will cater for public events and will be the centrepiece of the scheme, accommodating the main entrances to the hotel and student accommodation as well as a selection of busy shops, restaurants and leisure facilities.

Developers have calculates that should this project get the green light from the County Council in the Summer, around 175 net additional full-time equivalent jobs in the retail, hospitality and wider regional supply chain sectors will be created when the site eventually opens, contributing an estimated £6.8m of Gross Value added in economic output to the city.

David Hirschfield, Director at Galliard Homes, added: “We are delighted to partner with Citrus Group and make our first investment in Durham. The North East has always been a region very much on our radar due to its forward-thinking Council and the superb workforce the region boasts.

"Regeneration and place making have been at the core of Galliard Homes since inception and we are excited to be part of the Prince Bishops Place transformation from a mostly vacant shopping centre to a best in class mixed-use scheme”.

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Robert Dibden (Planning Director) at Lichfields added: “By re-purposing an existing, failing shopping centre, this scheme offers a great opportunity to both strengthen the vitality and viability of the City Centre, creating a vibrant destination that people will want to spend time in, and put Prince Bishops Place onto a viable financial footing, safeguarding its future.

"It will also significantly improve the overall design quality and appearance of the centre by introducing a finer grain of development which more closely reflects the historic character of Durham City”.

The website with further information will remain live at www.princebishopsplace.info. The planning application is expected to be heard at planning committee in the summer.