Hollywood film giant Paramount plans £2billion tourist resort for north Kent to create 27,000 jobs
image of the Paramount entertainment complex, including a water
park, bottom left
by Alan Watkins and business
editor Trevor Sturgess
Hollywood film giant Paramount is to
create 27,000 jobs with one of the world's biggest theme parks in
The massive £2billion project is set to transform the Swanscombe
peninsula, between Gravesend and Dartford, into an international
The entertainment complex will feature Europe's largest
indoor water park, theatres, live music venues, attractions,
cinemas, restaurants, event space and hotels.
It could take Paramount 18 months to get planning permission for
the large-scale project, with the theme park due to open in
Derelict land next to the Ebbsfleet International station has
been chosen for the huge project, on the same scale "as
Plans to build a
£2billion park in Swanscombe have been met with delight
It means visitors will step off the train and immediately
be inside the complex - twice the size of the Olympic Park.
A consortium of top companies has been developing the plans and
working with Dartford and Gravesham councils for a year.
The proposed site covers
virtually all the green areas on this map, stretching from the
small Swanscombe harbour, top, as far as the new Ingress Park homes
development, middle left. Picture: Google maps
In a joint statement, Dartford leader Jeremy Kite and Gravesham
leader John Burden said: "This development represents a tremendous
economic growth opportunity for the region."
Development firm London Resort Company Holdings (LRCH) has been
set up to spearhead the project and has signed a deal with
Paramount Licensing Inc, the licensing division for the
Hollywood-based Paramount Pictures.
Click and hold on areas
in our interactive graphic to see what is planned for where within
Tony Sefton, project leader for LRCH, said: "Our vision is
to create a world class entertainment destination, the first of its
kind in the UK.
"We are at the start of a long journey, but have been encouraged
by the support and buy-in we have had to date."
The complex is set to give a massive boost to tourism and inject
millions of pounds into the local economy while the jobs will be
welcomed in an area of relatively high youth unemployment.
The ambitious proposal will transform the Swanscombe peninsula,
which stretches from Ingress Park to the Ebbsfleet United football
ground at Northfleet.
It involves Paramount Pictures, London and Continental Railways,
the BBC and ITV, and a host of other organisations. The plans have
been put together by LRCH.
Land between Northfleet
and Ingress Park in Swanscombe which could be developed into one of
the world's biggest theme parks
The 872-acre development has the backing of the landowner,
Until now, the area has been the subject of a series of
half-hearted housing proposals within the Thames Gateway.
Revived ideas include plans for a cruise terminal to be built at
deep water moorings at Northfleet, close to the park.
A Paramount theme park is
also planned for South Korea
"We already have Eastern Quarry going ahead, and the expansion
of Bluewater, which will also bring in much needed jobs for the
area."It is an exciting time for the area."He said getting the
infrastructure right was going to be key to the development.
The complex will see 17,000 jobs created at the park, with
another 10,000 among suppliers and service organisations.
The plan also includes proposals to raise the land and tackle
flood risks along the waterfront.
Developers are promising:
An "exciting" new resort in the global tourist market
A showcase for environmental design and management
A UK training academy for the entertainment and hospitality
Apartments for the key workers
Support for the local economy by, for example, buying Kent
A new country park
The largest single-site science and education visitor facility
in Europe, generating one million educational visits a year
A local base for manufacture and sale of leisure products
The biggest performing arts centre in Europe
Re-use of some Olympic infrastructure
Emphasis on British and Kent character
Reducing impact on roads
The highest level of public transport arrivals of any major
leisure resort in the world
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