PLANS to transform Southampton city centre have been given the green light.
A total of 519 new homes, a walkway, green spaces and retail units will be built at the site of the former Bargate Shopping Centre.
It comes as the proposals tabled by developer Tellon Capital were approved by city councillors last night.
The scheme was described as “crucial” for the city.
As part of the project, there will be a new “linear park” from The Bargate to Queensway to showcase the city’s historic walls, which were previously hidden from view by the now-demolished shopping centre.
Developers said the scheme will showcase the city heritage.
But the City of Southampton Society raised some concerns about the proposed walkway.
Group member Simon Reynier said: “Early design showed the walkway to the city walls enhanced by shops and restaurants.
“It was a destination in its own right. Now it is nearly a passage between the High Street and Queensway.”
But Bargate councillor Sarah Bogle said “on balance this development is a positive scheme”.
It comes as developers initially proposed to build 287 homes, a new hotel and 7,343 square metres of retail space.
But the plans were amened last year, proposing 519 flats in buildings ranging from four to 13-storeys and a total of 2,515 square meters of retail space.
It comes as developers stressed that the pandemic changed demands and people’s habits.
Developers at Tellon Capital said they are committed to delivering the project which is expected to create 115 jobs and contribute £5.5m to the local economy.
GO!Southampton, which represents hundreds of city centre bsuiensses, backed the scheme.
Councillors asked for more cycle spaces at the site and further details will be agreed by officers and the developers at a later stage.
The panel unanimously approved the plans.
It comes as councillors said “on balance it is a good scheme”.