John Lewis has committed to anchoring the second phase of the Bond Street retail development in Chelmsford, Essex.

The 300,000 sq ft Bond Street development, owned by Aquila, will also include 20 retail units including shops, restaurants and a cinema.

The retail development could be by autumn 2014. John Lewis will invest around £15m in the development.

John Lewis managing director Andy Street said: “John Lewis Chelmsford will be our first shop in Essex. The Bond Street development in the city centre is a great fit for us and we look forward to bringing a flagship shop to Chelmsford.

“John Lewis Chelmsford will be our third flexible department store. We’re excited to see the roll out of this new format really starting to gather pace as we expand our reach to customers across the UK, providing them with more convenient access to our inspiring products and great service.”

Aquila chairman Tony Chambers said: “Planning consent was granted for our previous scheme in September last year. We have since been working with John Lewis  to redesign the scheme in order to accommodate their 119,000 sq ft flexible format department store and have now submitted a revised  planning application.”

John Lewis Chelmsford would be John Lewis’s third flexible department store, following the opening of Exeter in 2012 and York in 2013.  

John Lewis was represented by Cushman & Wakefield and Ashworths Chartered Surveyors. Aquila’s letting agent for the scheme is Douglas Stevens.