Building works are planned to transform a quarter of the historic centre of the city.
The £60m first phase includes a new home for the market, a six-screen cinema, restaurants, a public square and car parking.
Vinci has been appointed on an early contractor involvement basis to give the council a head start on the works. It will only be formally appointed for the Phase 1 detail design in autumn 2019. The contract for the building works is not expected to be signed until the end of 2019.
An initial pre-construction agreement, starting in autumn 2019, will see Vinci get to work on the final design and costings. The contrtactor will also provide advice prior to the construction phase to make sure the build meets potential tenant requirements and provides the best value for money.
Vinci Construction regional director John Roberts said: “We are very much looking forward to working with Cheshire West & Chester Council. This is the next positive step towards the redevelopment of the Northgate area of Chester. Being named preferred bidder will enable us to strengthen our existing community links in the surrounding area.”
Councillor Brian Clarke, cabinet member for economic development and infrastructure, said: “We have a clear vision for Chester Northgate that will support a lively leisure and culture offer in the city, as outlined in the One City Plan. It will support local retailers and Storyhouse and also provide much needed jobs, car parking, housing and office space in the heart of Chester.
“Chester Northgate is the largest project the city has seen in decades. Our aim is to secure Chester’s position as a visitor destination for years to come. Northgate is at the heart of our ambitions for Chester and it’s essential that we maintain the current momentum.”
In July Vinci Construction UK's Building North West division also won a £52m shopping centre contract in nearby Manchester to revamp Intu Trafford Centre's Barton Square area.