GRAYS Shopping Centre is set to be transformed with a major plan for new shops and leisure space and homes.

Developer New River is behind the proposals which also look at a new evening economy and open spaces too.

Public consultations are being held and no exact plans have been revealed at this stage.

Bosses for the project say the plans will see more shoppers and visitors in the town centre due to the extended daytime and evening economy.

The developer also says that having homes on the site will help boost business too.

Plans say: “Town centres need a mix of uses to thrive. The addition of community infrastructure to the mix of land uses will extend the functions of the town centre.

“The creation of a town centre that is safe, secure and activated throughout the day and evening through commercial and community activities will be essential for the longevity of the town centre.

“We are introducing public spaces with the flexibility to act as a cultural and community space for hosting events with new leisure offerings set in a safe and secure environment for all to enjoy.

“As part of this mixeduse development, we will be introducing new homes to the town centre.

“It will create an opportunity for people to live in this central location, close to the station and other important facilities.

“These new homes will allow residents to live in close proximity to public transport options and reduces the need for development on green belt sites.

“The introduction of new homes will benefit local shops by increasing the number of people living in this location and contribute to higher footfall for local businesses.”

The project leaders also say that the creation of new jobs and with anticipated greater footfall within the town due in part to the addition of homes, there will be a greater spend within local businesses.

The plans added: “Whilst Grays Shopping Centre sits at the centre of the town, it is not well connected outside of opening hours. There is a lack of evening activity and when the shopping centre is closed, the area is largely impassable.”