HUNDREDS of new jobs are on the horizon as five new restaurants are revealed for a new £18m cinema complex.
Not only will the restaurants and cinema provide more than 180 jobs when it is finished in summer 2015, the centre will be employing around 500 construction workers to build it.
The nine-screen cinema and five restaurants – Nando’s, Five Guys, Pizza Express, Coast to Coast and one as yet named – are being built at Whiteley Shopping Centre, which opened last May.
Shopping centre manager Neil Carter called the plans ‘an exciting end to the first year’ and said the centre would be employing as many local construction companies as possible, including TJ Group from Fareham.
The latest addition to the centre will add to its existing 14 cafes and restaurants.
Mr Carter said: ‘It’s really exciting, this is phase two of our development and this really adds the evening entertainment element to the Whiteley experience.
‘With the cinema, the restaurants and some other great new concepts that we will shortly be announcing, we’re going to have a really rounded offer for the day and for the evening.’
The first part of Whiteley Shopping Centre cost £84m and took 98 weeks to build, plus it created more than 1,000 jobs.
The centre has won several awards in its first 10 months, including one for being the best new medium sized development in Europe at the International Council of Shopping Centres awards.
Mr Carter said: ‘The first year has been absolutely amazing.
‘Our sales and footfall have been above expectations and the feedback we have received has been very positive. We think phase two will make us the best in the area.’
As reported, the construction of the cinema will see a loss of 128 car parking spaces from its 1,355 spaces. Mr Carter said his team would be keeping a close eye on the parking situation.
There are currently four empty units at the centre, three of which are in legal negotiations with companies.
Mr Carter added: ‘We will be fully let going into the summer this year.’
Construction started on the site last Monday.