Is Central Village Dead?.

Central Village, a £160m major and much-needed regeneration project in central Liverpool has had many problems since being given the go ahead in June 2006, nearly 10 years ago!

Comprising the former Lewis’s department store and the area behind it which used to house the high-level Central rail station, it first encountered problems when the construction arm of the developer Merepark went into liquidation in 2013.

A year later, a new construction company was announced to take over the regeneration project. Work didn’t seem to start again though. Later, another firm replaced them – Bowmer & Kirkland. Whilst work did get underway this time, now it seems to have come to yet another stand still.

The cleaned up Lewis’s building does now comprise of a few companies after it’s partial refit, however vast sections of the building remain unfinished; including the cut-through that was created at the corner of the building to allow people access to the proposed Newington Plaza and boardwalk. The scheme’s residential twin towers are also notably absent from planning applications.

As well as this, major deals have fallen through throughout the project’s build, including those of Marriott’s Moxy brand in conjunction with Ikea,and Millennium & Copthorne hotels. Lidl also now looks like it has walked away from the scheme, it’s alcohol licence having being taken down from windows.

It took so long for the build to come along that a restaurant chain; TGI Fridays, eventually decided to open up a branch in Liverpool ONE instead.

Elements built so far:

  • Multi Storey Car Park, originally supposed to be operated by Qpark until they walked away.
  • PureGym,  Lewis’s building,
  • Adagio Aparthotel, Lewis’s building,
  • NHS Liverpool CCG (Charity grants and public consultations).

Companies said to still be signed in June 2015:

  • Chiquito, Cosmo,Frankie & Benny’s, The Handmade Burger Company, Harvester, ODEON, Prezzo, Zouk Tea Bar and Grill.

Whats going on now?

Things are now silent again at Central Village, and Liverpool deserves to know what is going on with this scheme. It would help regenerate the rest of the area, including the run-down Renshaw Street where some businesses are left in limbo. They moved into the area and taken a chance to catch passing trade from the new development, but it just isn’t happening.

Not only that, but just imagine the contrast this partially-built scheme will give when compared to the new Lime Street, which is due to start being built by Neptune in February 2016.

The website hasn’t been updated since 29th February 2012. The scheme’s backers have insisted time and again that “Central Village will still be built”. We have to wonder if the silence now is speaking louder than the backers former words…

Is Central Village dead?



  • Central says:

    Maybe Network rail quietly stepped in and have reserved the land for future expansion of the station?

    It is the busiest station in Merseyside after all…

  • Dominic Ion says:

    Will someone in authority please cut through all the uncertainty that has surrounded this scheme over the last few years and tell us clearly what is going on? If Central Village is indeed dead in the water then for God’s sake say so, and then we’ll all know where we are. However, if (as I sincerely hope) it is to go ahead then please say exactly what is going to happen and when.

    I thought that, with the coming of Objective One status and the development of Liverpool One, the days of “pie-in-the-sky” schemes for the city had finally come to an end. Either show me I am right (please!) or come clean and put us all out of our misery!

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22nd January 2016 by Chris Gibson