Mint Quarter's future to become clearer

DETAILS of the future for the Mint Quarter in central Ipswich should become clearer later this year.Shearer Property Group has linked up with site owners National Car Parks to develop the area between Tacket Street and Carr Street.

DETAILS of the future for the Mint Quarter in central Ipswich should become clearer later this year.

Shearer Property Group has linked up with site owners National Car Parks to develop the area between Tacket Street and Carr Street.

Guy Shearer said his company was still drawing up plans for the new shopping centre - and should be ready to unveil them in the middle of the year.

He said: “We have been having informal talks with planning officials at Ipswich council and have had preliminary discussions with potential tenants.

“Then we have to work up these plans before we have a masterplan for the site which we can formally put in for planning permission. That is unlikely to happen before the middle of the year.”

His company had been talking to large retailers about the possibility of moving into Mint Quarter to occupy the “anchor stores” at the heart of the development.

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Mr Shearer could not say who these were - but said Swedish lifestyle icons Ikea were not on his list.

Ikea had been mentioned as a possible tenant for the Mint Quarter after it announced earlier this week that it was switching its focus in Britain away from out-of-town stores to town centre locations.

A spokeswoman for Ikea said they could not say whether they were looking for a site in Ipswich - although the explosion in new homes around the Waterfront is thought to make the town attractive to the company.

And it is planning to open a major distribution centre at Stanton between Bury St Edmunds and Diss.

N What would you like to see happen with the Mint Quarter? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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