Work is well under way on the demolition of Riverside Precinct and Chantry Buildings as part of a key milestone in the development of Forge Island.
The rear of the buildings on Corporation Street have been taken down with hoardings now in place at the front of the buildings which include images and details about the Forge Island development and wider town centre regeneration plans.
Forge Island, which sits between the River Don and South Yorkshire Navigation Canal, will host a new leisure scheme with an 8-screen boutique style cinema, modern hotel, food and drink outlets and car parking.
The facilities will be set within an attractive square with a new pedestrian bridge over the river connecting the island to the wider town centre.
The demolition of the old Primark building on High Street is also complete and work is progressing to transform the area into a pocket park.
Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy, Cllr Denise Lelliott, said: “It’s exciting to see the plans for the town centre coming into shape. If you walk around Rotherham now, you’ll see new housing being created, improvements to our open spaces and the plans for Forge Island moving forward.
“We know that we have to think differently about what Rotherham town centre needs to thrive and we have a long-term vision about the use of the area for years to come.”
Work to the open spaces on Bridgegate were completed in April and have transformed the area with new paving, upgraded lighting and contemporary planters giving a brighter, modern feel to the street.
Works on College Street also started in April and include new paving, lighting and seating plus 11 pay & display parking spaces.
Plans are now being considered for phase two of the works that will include Effingham Street and Howard Street.
Part of the works on Effingham Street will see the removal of two cherry trees due to poor health. Both trees will be replaced as part of the renovations to the open spaces.
The Rotherham Town Centre Investment Fund, which was establish by the Council to deliver the Masterplan, is funding the town centre regeneration with further funding secured, and being sought, from other sources including the Government’s Future High Streets Fund, Transforming Cities Fund and the Towns Fund.