PP O’Connor lands Wigan Galleries groundworks

The Wigan Galleries site [Photo: MM Management]

Developer Cityheart and its Chinese contractor BCEGI Construction have completed the demolition phase of the Wigan Galleries redevelopment programme.

 BCEGI, working with specialist demolition contractor Rhodar Industrial Services, was appointed to undertake the first stage of the works. An 18-month phased programme of demolition across the 41,000 sqm site began in July 2022 and completed this week on schedule.

PP O’Connor has been appointed to undertake the next phase of ground enabling works, ahead of a main contractor for the development of phase one being appointed in the coming weeks. PP O’Conner has made an immediate start on site and will be undertaking archaeology and site investigation works in the coming weeks.

Cityheart chief operating officer Warren Taylor said: “BCEGI has undertaken an extensive programme of very complex and carefully sequenced site remediation and demolition works which has progressed at pace over the last year and a half.  Managing and maintaining the programme over such a complex space is testament to the fantastic work BCEGI and Rhodar have delivered in clearing and levelling this complex site, paving the way for the first phase of construction work which will commence in the coming months.”

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During the demolition phase Rhodar employed a variety of techniques, from heavy machinery to hand demolition, to protect the adjacent Grade II listed structures. Materials have been reused to create development platforms for the new buildings and more than 10,000 roof slates have been reclaimed for re-use, together with 1,000 tonnes of mixed metals, 60,000 tonnes of bricks and concreate hard core for re-use.

Cityheart was set up in 2005  by Mark McNamee, who was previously managing director of David McLean Developments. It was appointed by Wigan Council as its strategic development partner for the £135m redevelopment of The Galleries shopping centre in June 2021.  Since the development agreement was signed a hybrid planning consent for the full site has been secured.

The first phase of the development is set to start this year and will include a new market hall and food court, a 144-bedroom hotel and the basement and associated infrastructure. This initial phase will be followed by the start of construction for the Pavilion building and the cinema and leisure space.

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