As Comet’s administrators Deloitte struggle to find a buyer for the collapsed electrical chain, Worthing’s Comet store closure at Teville Gate has led to renewal of questions on the delayed £150 million redevelopment of the site.
With the closure of the Worthing Comet store, which had been in the town for more than 20 years, there is just one firm remaining at Teville Gate, which has been subjected to a series of regeneration plans over the past 15 years, but saw no implementations.
Developers Hanson Capital Management recently confirmed commitment to delivering its ambitious scheme, which had been scheduled to commence in the second half of this year. The company’s Worthing Gateway project received approval from the borough council in October last year.
The Worthing Gateway project consisted of plans for 226 new homes boasting a centrepiece twin-tower design, a 9 screen cinema, a 100-bedroom hotel, restaurant facilities, plus conference and exhibition centre. Parking for more than 900 cars was also included.
The redevelopment project would provide a major boost to the Worthing area, with a total of £2 million being paid to the council for target community improvement projects including improving the public realm surrounding Worthing station and the immediate area of the development.
Turbulent economic conditions have been attributed as cause for delays for securing the scheme, which borough planners acknowledged had only narrowly passed economic viability tests last year. However, some progress has been reported as the developers are in the process of submitting a 106 legal agreement with the council this month, which adds to its initial application last year.