Plans to build a multiplex cinema on a vacant site in Dundee city centre have been dropped – in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
A Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) has been submitted to Dundee City Council for a plan to build offices, cafes/restaurants, retail and residential units on empty land at Greenmarket, behind Nethergate and next to Dundee Science Centre.
The site has long been earmarked for a new cinema, restaurant and hotel complex, although no formal planning application has ever been submitted.
A PAN is a formal procedure required for major development proposals which requires the developer to undertake a period of consultation with the local community prior to submitting a planning application.
Applicant Crucible (Dundee) Ltd is now preparing to hold an online consultation event in December to see the revised plans – which make no mention of a cinema.
Crucible’s parent company Crucible Alba had previously proposed building a £24million nine-screen cinema and a hotel and restaurant complex back in 2018.
But as the Tele reported in February this year – a month before the coronavirus pandemic struck the UK and threw the hospitality and leisure industries into chaos – the project had struggled to attract prospective clients amid an already challenging market for big restaurant chains.
Speaking to the Tele today, Michael Smart, Crucible Alba’s development director, said: “In light of recent circumstances things have changed quite a lot since we first made the application, and the planning application has changed with that.”
When asked if that meant Covid-19, he added: “Yes, so the cinema element of it has disappeared. It it part of the development process anyway though; things move on, and you adapt and change.”
He added that he was positive the rest of the development would go ahead as previously set out.