£300 million Meadowhall extension plans approvedPosted by: Molly McGreevy
The Leisure Hall will be built on Meadowhall's car park
Sheffield’s Meadowhall is set to become home to a new retail destination called The Leisure Hall
Sheffield City Council has approved plans to build a £300 million extension to Meadowhall called The Leisure Hall, which is due to open in 2021.
In a move that almost directly contradicts their commitment to regenerating The Moor and increasing footfall into Sheffield’s city centre, councillors voted unanimously in favour of the plans, which would see a 1.1million sq ft extension built across multiple levels. Inside, and under a rather space-age looking glazed roof, The Leisure Hall will feature dining and entertainment, and internal and external spaces for events and community use.
The new development will be built on the yellow deck, and part of the red deck, of the centre’s car park. Inside will be a cinema to replace the current Vue cinema in Meadowhall, a new café court, gym and space for all sorts of other activities and experiences.
At £300m, it’s the biggest investment British Land has committed to Meadowhall since the centre opened in 1990, but concerns have been raised about congestion around the centre leading to increased pollution and health problems, and the impact of the centre on the region’s city centres. Despite undoubtedly dragging Sheffielders away from the city – which has enjoyed a resurgence of redevelopment recently with plans in motion to regenerate Castlegate and Victoria Quays – The Leisure Hall is predicted to create more than 1,000 jobs once it’s opened, so it’s not all bad.
In an attempt to ease concerns about The Leisure Hall, both British Land and IKEA have committed millions to easing congestion in the area. IKEA is set to open at the end of September, and is already making a huge impact in Sheffield, with a programme of events planned to celebrate the store’s opening in full swing, including a dedicated IKEA SuperTram.
Now plans have been approved, building The Leisure Hall has been predicted to take four years, with a provisional opening date set for 2021.
What do you think of the plans? Will The Leisure Hall see the city centre turned back into a ghost town? Or is it an opportunity for Sheffield to be seen as a shopping destination – both in and out of town? Let us know in the comments!