Pictures reveal how Sheffield's own 'Times Square' inspired by New York tourist destination will look

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An opening date has been confirmed for a major public square at the heart of Sheffield’s £65 million ‘Chinatown’ development.

New Era Square is expected to be complete in May 2020, and will sit at the centre of the New Era scheme which comprises apartments, Grade A office space and Asian restaurants off Bramall Lane.

Designer David Wei, co-founder of Hatch Architects which has practices in London and Shanghai, has been commissioned to come up with plans for artwork for the public space, which developer Jerry Cheung previously likened to a ‘mini Times Square’, referring to the US tourist destination in New York City.

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David once worked at renowned firm Foster+Partners, and has been involved with several ambitious projects for hotels, business parks and visitor attractions in China, including the Shanghai Bulgari Hotel and Chengdu Cloud Valley.

How New Era Square will look.How New Era Square will look.
How New Era Square will look.

Discussions are happening with Sheffield Council over the artwork. At least one piece is envisaged, but there will possibly be more.

The installation of the art is being planned to coincide with the square’s official opening. A small section will be opened from the end of January, at the same time as Chinese New Year.

Grade A office space – including offices for the China-UK Business Incubator, aimed at facilitating Chinese investment in the UK and British investment in China – and places for food and drink are also expected to be complete by May, with an 80-space underground public car park already finished.

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Phase one, featuring 686 student flats and several private apartments, the KH Oriental supermarket and Chinese retailers, including a hairdresser and street food vendors, is already complete and occupied.

An artist's impression of the New Era development at night.An artist's impression of the New Era development at night.
An artist's impression of the New Era development at night.

Fine-dining Asian restaurant Oisoi has also committed to take up space at New Era once the development is complete.

Jerry Cheung, managing director of New Era Developments, said: “Our intention has always been to create something special for Sheffield and the wider city region. New Era will deliver a flavour of the excitement, dynamism and energy of modern China and East Asia, married with the best of Western culture.”