Shires West gets go-ahead from the Government

Hammerson and Hermes' 600,000 sq ft (55,740 sq m) extension to the Shires shopping centre in Leicester has received the go-ahead from the Government Office for the East Midlands.

The Government has ratified Leicester City Council's resolution to grant planning permission for 540,000 sq ft (50,165 sq m) of retail space, 64,500 sq ft (5,990 sq m) of restaurant and leisure uses, including a cinema, and 118 residential units.

The proposals will include a refurbishment of the existing 517,000 sq ft (48,030 sq m) Shires centre. John Lewis has already signed up to take the 200,000 sq ft (18,580 sq m) anchor store. The developers say that construction of Shires West is expected to begin during summer next year, with completion in early 2008.