Ambitious plans for a 1.3 million sq ft retail-led regeneration scheme at Harlow in Essex have been unveiled ahead of the submission of a formal planning application.

Joint developers Stockland and Harlow Council have made the plans for the scheme public as part of a consultation and will begin preparing an application to be submitted next summer.

The project, Town Centre North, would mean a major overhaul of Harlow, including an extra 450,000 sq ft of retail space.

If the plans are approved the joint partnership will open the project in phases starting in 2013. Among the goals for the scheme is to bring a major department store retailer and new supermarket to the town.