Richmondshire District Council has granted planning permission, subject to a Section 106 agreement being put in place, for the project which developers have said could create up to 700 new jobs and provide a significant boost to the local economy.
Yesterday Coun John Blackie, leader of Richmondshire District Council, said: “We welcome the scheme very much.”
The council leader said the investment that the developers were making in the district at a time when British and global economies were hit by the downturn was very welcome.
The project will transform the former sports ground in Gough Road, which is currently owned by the Ministry of Defence.
Once completed, it will include shops, a five-screen cinema, cafés, restaurants and bars and a 60- bed hotel with 400 car parking spaces.
Jonathan Hart, chief executive at Lingfield Securities, said: “We are delighted that this exciting project has secured a resolution to grant planning permission.
“The scheme will significantly help the local economy by creating a variety of employment opportunities, as well as providing high quality leisure and retail facilities for the people of Catterick and the surrounding area.”
Tom Gilman, director at Kier Property, said: “This is an important milestone and we are looking forward to regenerating Catterick Garrison town centre.
“We have taken great care to respect the special heritage of the town and believe the proposed retail and leisure facilities will breathe new life into the area.”
The proposals are the latest stage of redevelopment plans in the area.
As well as providing jobs it is hoped the scheme will boost the economy significantly through attracting further investment.
In the past some local traders had raised fears that large-scale developments were hitting their trade and diverting people away from spending at local independent shops.
However, Coun Blackie said it was proposed that talks would be held to look at ways of limiting any impact upon Richmond.
He is keen to ensure that those who use the new development are also made aware of the opportunities in Richmond.
Hopes of delivering the redevelopment project in the garrison town have been in the pipeline for some time.
Coun Blackie added: “The scheme dates back to 2006/7 when it was a much bigger scheme but of course interfering between now and then was the financial crisis which has engulfed the world so it is not as big as it would have been then.
“However, we welcome the scheme very much.”
Catterick Garrison is the largest British Army garrison in Europe with a population of around 18,000.
Lingfield Securities signed an agreement in 2010 with the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), the MoD’s property and services provider, to carry out proposals for the site’s development.
The siting of the garrison was first recommended by Robert Baden-Powell who founded the scouting movement in 1908 while he was based at the Army barracks, which at that time were located in Richmond Castle.
The area was originally named Richmond Camp before being changed to Catterick Camp in 1915.
The garrison is home to both 4 Mechanised Brigade and the Infantry Training Centre where all infantry soldiers receive their basic and advanced training.