Following the closure of the car park at Union and George Street on 5th April, appointed contractor Sir Robert McAlpine will start the earth and demolition works to facilitate the building of the new retail destination, which will bring the first John Lewis store to Leeds, set to be one of its largest stores outside of London.
During the construction process it is estimated that 3,200 tonnes of reinforced steel will be used, the equivalent weight of 1,450 Range Rovers. The Victoria Gate retail arcades, which will be 175 metres in length, will use more than 500,000 bricks for exterior design and around 1,030 glass panels will be used to create the roof.
Commenting on the project, Hammersons Director of Retail Development, Robin Dobson said: “Starting on site is a major milestone for the project team and the city. With 1,000 construction jobs on site, and up to 300 construction workers on site during peak times, this provides a welcome additional economic boost to local businesses during the construction phase.”
Leeds City Council executive board member for the economy and development councillor Richard Lewis said: “We are very excited to see work start on site and delighted to welcome the opportunities it will bring. It is fantastic to see this high-quality development come to fruition. A lot of hard work has gone into getting to this point. Victoria Gate will be an outstanding retail experience and the envy of other cities. It will strengthen Leeds’ position as a highly desirable destination and hopefully attract more big names in the future.”