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Proposals for major investment in Cineworld extension and renovation

Plans for a major investment at a Bury St Edmunds cinema complex have been unveiled.

An extension and renovation programme at Cineworld, in Parkway, could see two new screens built – taking the total on-site to 10 – as well as a new lobby, lounge and café area.

Cineworld hopes to build an extension across the pedestrianised entry alley between ASK restaurant and the former Giraffe unit. This would bring the cinema’s frontage level with the restaurants and street.

How Cineworld could look if plans are approved (29043456)
How Cineworld could look if plans are approved (29043456)

The existing lobby would accommodate the two new screens – one at ground floor and the second on the first floor – while a new entrance lobby would be housed in the extension and vacant Giraffe unit.

Cineworld also plans a significant refurbishment of the interior to improve access for those with mobility problems and to ‘meet the demands of a contemporary cinema offer’, according to a design and access statement submitted to West Suffolk Council this week. The existing eight screens would be refurbished as part of this programme.

The proposals would also offer a second lounge at the rear of the complex, while part of the former Giraffe unit would accommodate a new café.

While the number of cinema screens at the Parkway complex would increase if the plans are passed, the overall number of seats would decrease from 1,632 to 1,424.

If approved, it is thought the development could create 10 new part-time jobs in addition to the existing 31 Cineworld employees.

The 498sqm complex opened in 2005 after a long-running battle by residents against the scheme on a former car park.

The freehold of the building is owned by Parkway Leisure Investments Limited.

A consultation into the plans closes on March 4.

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