Plans to expand White Rose Shopping Centre approved


white rose centre cinema proposals
Expansion plans at the White Rose Centre include a cinema

Proposals to expand the White Rose Shopping Centre in South Leeds and build a new 12-screen cinema have been given the green light by planning chiefs today.

As previously reported on South Leeds Life, the plans, which also include extensions to the existing Primark store and Debenhams store, new restaurants and a new car park for employees, are expected to create around 1,000 new jobs and 195 construction jobs.

The planning application presented to the City Plans Panel today (12 December 2013) includes an employment plan which focuses on recruiting staff from nearby areas of high unemployment such as Middleton, Belle Isle, Beeston and Holbeck. The employment offer is reinforced by proposals to extend bus services to these areas.

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and support services said:

“I welcome this scheme taking shape and the significant benefits it will bring, particularly much-needed job opportunities in construction and retail and improved transport links. This is good news for the whole city but particularly for residents in the south Leeds area.”

Commenting on Twitter, Councillor Kim Groves, Chair of the Inner South Jobs & Skills Board said:

“I’m delighted that White Rose Centre expansion moved forward today. South Leeds needs job opportunities for local people and a cinema in our area.”

Members of the City Plans Panel approved the expansion of the site, subject to negotiations with the developer to ensure there is sufficient financing for any further traffic improvements.

As is usual with this type of application, the plans will also be referred to the Secretary of State to see if he wants to intervene in the process.

5 Replies to “Plans to expand White Rose Shopping Centre approved”

  1. I’m very happy to hear that a cinema will finally be accessible to the people of South Leeds! Entertainment is important and at the minute it is very difficult to reach a cinema from our side of the city.
    I hope that the building work will also be sourced from local companies because the building trade needs a significant boost in our area too!

  2. It’s OK them saying to recruit from local areas but the opening hours of the centre do not coincide with the service offered by the buses. When the centre first opened in 1997 buses served BOTH ends of the centre, one stop at Sainsburys and the ‘station’ at Debenhams. I would like to know:

    1. Would bus services mirror stores opening hours for staff living in Holbeck and Belle Isle who don’t drive, (it is especially dangerous walking home past 9pm if you live in these 2 areas for a lone female). Despite being in such close proximity to the centre it is immensely difficult to get to on a morning or evening.

    2. How many of the jobs will be from the local communities and how many will transfer from other stores (usually over 2/3 of these jobs are transfers rather than new recruitments thus greatly decreasing the juicyness of the available jobs) how many will be part time? and how many will be full time? (many families have 2 non working parents so more full time jobs would make more sense, it would mean if at least 1 parent can work full time a huge diffeence can be made). How may zero hour contracts? Again we don’t need these in this area, we need steady jobs. I could go on but have 2 toddlers to see to 🙂

  3. Thanks, Cheryl for this. I don’t know the answer to your first point which I agree is very important but I’ll see what I can find out.

    Ass you’ll see from my earlier post: there is a substantial sum set aside for transport issues. From that post you’ll see that 1000 jobs equates to 600 Full Time Equivalents so there are a lot of part time jobs I appreciate the point you make about part time jobs.

    The report the City Plans Panel considered yesterday stated that: ‘According to a recent survey of the centre, 68% of their (White Rose Shopping Centre shops) employees live in the five nearest postcode areas.’ (Section 10.3.3) I have established that these are: LS10, LS11, LS12, LS27 and WF3. These cover a wide area.

    The report also states: ‘Once completed and operational, the development will provide up to 1000 new jobs. The Employment Strategy sets a target for the Centre and its tenants (new and existing) to employ at least 40% of new employees from the 6 Wards identified above (Ardsley and Robin Hood, Beeston and Holbeck, City and Hunslet, Middleton Park, Morley North and Morley South) and 70% from within Leeds.’ (Section 10.3.6) The idea is, therefore, to focus the targets on new employees in the Centre which takes account of your point about transfers.

    In my view the local job target is too low and the commitment to achieve local jobs is only a target with no sanctions for failure. The jobs and training plan connected to the planning applications are included in a draft Employment Strategy which I have now received but wasn’t published with the report on the planning applications. I will see what this says and publish something on South Leeds Life if it is of interest.

  4. Fantastic news looking forward to going when it all opens. The new Italian (Prezzo – I think it was called) is worth a visit while you’re waiting for them to complete.

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