This is what tourist street could look like in 18 month’s time
- Credit: Archant
New plans show how Regent Road could look in eighteen month's time.
Councillors have approved plans to build 10 shops, a new leisure facility and 23 homes at the fire hit site of the former indoor market and Regent Superbowl on Great Yarmouth's busy tourist thoroughfare.
A gaping hole was left at the centre of one of the resort's busiest streets after a huge fire gutted an indoor market and bowling alley last year.
Site owner Phil Thompson said he already has people ready to move into the 10 shops, with former traders from the site moving back in
He added: 'It has been a long time coming. We have listened to what the neighbours want and we're trying to do what is best for the area.'
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Great Yarmouth Borough Council's planning committee voted unanimously on Wednesday night to back the proposals.
The first shops could open by the summer of 2019 if the timetable for works is met, with building expected to take a year.
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A plan was originally submitted earlier in the year for a total of 49 homes, a new indoor market, public toilets, a café and a leisure complex.
However after a consultation exercise and commercial soundings for the development were taken, there was found to be a lack of interest in the dense housing offer and larger leisure complex.
The plans were subsequently withdrawn and a new design drawn up.
The company which ran the former Regent Bowl alley, which was until the fire the oldest bowling alley in the country that was still in use, said they would not be returning to the site.
Speaking at the planning meeting, councillor Marlene Fairhead questioned what the future use of the leisure space would be and expressed disappointment that the site would not be replaced like for like.
She added: 'That is what the public were promised, that it was going to be replaced.'
Councillor Carl Annison welcomed the revised plans and said they would be a big boost.
He added: 'I think it's a fantastic plan. I know there are areas of Yarmouth where terrible fires have happened that are still empty.'