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Contractor appointed for Rochdale's new retail and leisure development

01 February 2018

Rochdale Riverside development visualisation.Genr8 Developments has appointed major construction firm Willmott Dixon to build Rochdale’s £80million retail and leisure development, Rochdale Riverside, with work due to start within weeks.

Delivered by a joint venture between Genr8 Developments and Kajima in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council, the development comprises approximately 200,000ft2 (60,970m2) of retail and leisure accommodation in the centre of Rochdale.

‘Work on site will begin on Monday, 26 February 2018’

The appointment of the company, which was founded in 1852, is another major step forward for the scheme which will bring 24 new retail and leisure units and a 6-screen cinema to the heart of Rochdale town centre. Work will start on site on Monday, 26 February 2018.

The news comes just a week after Boots, JD Sports and River Island announced they would be investing more than £3million opening new stores within the development.

'Around £21million will be spent with local companies in the construction industry'

Contracts for work packages connected to the build, including groundwork, steelwork, roofing and cladding, will be awarded in the coming months. The contract is expected to plough millions into the local economy, with Willmott Dixon estimating a spend of £21.5million direct with companies across Greater Manchester.

Willmott Dixon will be hosting a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event which will give local companies an opportunity to find out more about the work packages associated with the construction of Rochdale Riverside and how they can get involved. The event is due to take place in Rochdale town centre in March 2018 and will be advertised in the last few weeks of February 2018.

'‘It’s full steam ahead for our new retail and leisure development’ – council leader Allen Brett'

Councillor Allen Brett, leader of the council, said: “It’s full steam ahead for Rochdale Riverside and I know our residents will welcome us reaching yet another important milestone in our flagship regeneration project. This is the final part of Rochdale town centre’s £250million regeneration package, which has transformed this area in recent years.”

Mike Smith, partner at Genr8 Developments, said: “We are very pleased to announce Willmott Dixon as lead contractor and look forward to seeing work commence on-site later this month. The scheme is now over 60 per cent let and with works commencing on-site we expect to be able to announce further lettings soon.”

'250 operatives will be working on site at peak times'

It is estimated that 250 operatives could be working on the site at peak times. Around 80 different companies are likely to be subcontracted to help deliver the scheme. The development is also expected to create a number of apprenticeships.

Willmott Dixon, whose North West office is based in Oldham, has worked on projects up and down the country, as well as several closer to home, including Rochdale Leisure Centre and St Anne’s Academy in Middleton.

Anthony Dillon, managing director of Willmott Dixon in the North West, said: “As a locally based company, we are delighted to have been appointed for this flagship project which will be a fantastic new addition for the town as well as a catalyst to encourage new inward investment. We'll also support the local economy by using businesses from the area whenever possible during the build programme; we want to leave a lasting legacy that all can be proud.”

Lambert Smith Hampton represented the council on the Rochdale Riverside project, providing development and investment advice. Cheetham & Mortimer and JLL are representing Genr8 Developments and Kajima.