Following months of anticipation, the developers of the long awaited Grand Central Birmingham have announced that the doors will be opening to the public on Thursday, September 24, 2015. The city’s new £150 million premium retail and dining destination will see the arrival of one of the biggest John Lewis department stores in the UK and will coincide with the completion of the world-class Birmingham New Street station which will transform rail travel for millions of passengers using it every year.

The half a million sq ft centre, which will employ over 1,000 people, is one of the best and most ambitious regeneration projects seen in the UK for many years, and is anticipated to attract over 50 million visitors per year.

An exciting array of brands will be making their debut to the city with the centre boasting over 60 shops, restaurants and cafes which will complement the existing shopping and entertainment already in Birmingham, making the city centre one of the best shopping destinations outside of London.

Richard Brown, Grand Central development director, said:  “After years of hard work and collaboration with Birmingham City Council and other key partners, it’s a pleasure to be able to announce the official opening date of Grand Central which has been eagerly awaited by people far and wide.

“We are making great progress with the development as we are entering into the final stages before nearing completion. There is still a lot to do, but we are right on schedule with a real buzz on site as we are seeing the centre being brought to life.”

The John Lewis store will stretch across four floors and 250,000sq ft, offering more than 350,000 products including fashion, furniture, homewares, beauty and the latest technology.

Lisa Williams, Head of Branch at John Lewis Birmingham, said: “It is so exciting to be able to announce the opening date of our regional flagship shop. I can’t wait to meet my team of Partners (staff) and start welcoming customers through the doors to what will be our most innovative shop to date.

“We’ve been so grateful for the support from the community since we announced our plans to open the new shop, and we can’t wait to bring the best John Lewis has to offer to Birmingham on the 24th September.”

The look and feel of Grand Central will create an exciting and vibrant environment for shoppers and commuters with a stunning atrium interior that will see the shops and restaurants surrounding the magnificent New Street station concourse. Interactive internal displays will allow visitors to explore not just the centre but also other attractions in the city; and the customer service will be second to none with all staff having undergone a world- leading customer service program.

Martin Frobisher, route director for London North West said: “I am really looking forward to opening the doors to our fantastic new station. In addition to a striking building in the heart of the city passengers will experience a station with natural light, improved platform access, stunning architecture and better routes through the city. It has certainly been worth the wait and in combination with Grand Central creates a great first impression of Birmingham.”

Sir Albert Bore, the Leader of Birmingham City Council said: “The redevelopment of Grand Central has been a key project for the city: stimulating economic growth, creating over 1000 jobs and acting as a catalyst for regeneration in the surrounding area.

“Grand Central will provide one of the best-connected shopping spaces in the country, helping to attract visitors to Birmingham. With its central location in the heart of the city it will be a key element of Birmingham’s ever improving retail and architectural landscape.”