Step Places eyes 2024 completion for Wigan Pier Quarter
The developer is on the hunt for leisure, culture, and entertainment operators as part of the area’s revamp as a visitor destination.
Step Places is the development partner of Wigan Council for the scheme, designed by architect Southgate & Sarabia.
In total, the Pier Quarter project will deliver 55,000 sq ft of office, events, and commercial space, along with leisure, retail, and community facilities at Wigan Pier.
The regeneration of the area will also transform Piers 2 and 3 to provide a multi-event space. Piers 4 and 5 are also being redeveloped to be used for temporary events.
A tender is now out for operators to occupy the space, including three of Wigan Pier’s historic buildings. Dating from the 1790s, these are a 23,000 sq ft warehouse, the 8,000 sq ft former Orwell at Wigan Pier pub, and the 4,500 sq ft former education centre at the pier.
Wigan Pier was originally a loading jetty where wagons piled coal onto barges bound for the Leeds-Liverpool Canal, made famous by author George Orwell’s 1937 book The Road to Wigan Pier – hence the Orwell pub.
Later, the area became famous due to the Wigan Pier nightclub, which sat near the banks of the canal.
Step Places director Harinder Dhaliwal said: “Our ambition from the start was to put this area back on the map as one of the premier cultural destinations in the North, and so this is an opportune time to go the market and see the full range of partnership options.”
Construction started on the scheme when plans were approved in 2019. Work was shut down in 2020 due to COVID-19 and was later pushed back due to contractor availability and increasing costs.
Work restarted last June and is expected to be completed next year.
James Winterbottom, director of strategy and innovation at Wigan Council, said: “We remain committed to delivering the Wigan Pier development, which will see this important and iconic part of our local heritage reimagined for future generations to enjoy.
“It’s positive news that Step Places is moving forward with the project, and we look forward to seeing so much of the hard work happening behind the scenes coming together.”