Shopping mall developer Westfield Group has announced agreements to develop the Bradford centre and sell its interest to Meyer Bergman, a privately held specialist retail real estate investment management firm.
London-based Meyer Bergman is being backed by two Canadian pension funds.
Meyer Bergman will become the owner of the Bradford site and appoint Westfield to the development, design, construction and leasing roles for the new shopping centre. Westfield will also be appointed as property manager for the centre following completion of the development.
The new owner is promising a £260m development comprising a 550,000 square foot retail centre, anchored by Debenhams, Marks & Spencer and Next, together occupying more than a third of the project area.
Westfield director of development Duncan Bower said: “The agreements with Meyer Bergman are a significant step forward for the development of the shopping centre for the city of Bradford.
“Westfield has remained committed to progressing the Bradford scheme through difficult global economic times. In the past 12 months, Westfield has secured revised planning permission to ensure the scheme is more complimentary to the city centre, completed the anchor store negotiations with the signing of Marks & Spencer, extended the lease agreement with Debenhams to create an additional third sales level and confirmed that Next intends to open its second Bradford store.
“There is increasing momentum behind this project and strong retail interest from a range of major stores and specialty shops given the relatively untapped retail market in Bradford City Centre.”