PLANS for one of the biggest-ever redevelopments in Huddersfield were unveiled today.
And Kirklees Council leaders say the £200m project is hugely exciting.
The plan follows a previous attempt to develop a large slice of the town centre.
That was shelved when campaigners managed to get listed building status for the 1930s public library building and Queensgate Market Hall.
The new project - the biggest in Huddersfield for decades - has been named Queensgate Revival.
It will see a transformation of The Piazza shopping precinct and surrounding area.
Clr Ken Sims, Kirklees Council's Cabinet member for regeneration, said: "This is the biggest and most exciting development proposal for Huddersfield for many decades - and we have had many others in recent years.
"It will transform this part of the town, build on the success of Kingsgate and consolidate the town as one of the most robust and thriving shopping and commercial centres in the north of England."
The scheme will see huge development. It includes:
* Sixty new shops
* Offices, bars and restaurants
* Some 170 flats
* A new 70,000sq ft library and art gallery, to be built on the corner of Ramsden Street and Peel Street.
* The 1930s facade of the existing library on the Piazza will be retained. But inside the books will be replaced by two floors of shops and a health club and leisure facilities upstairs
* A 100-bed hotel is planned for the upper floors of the old Co-operative building on New Street, which will retain both its Victorian and 1930s facades
* Queensgate multi-storey car park will be demolished and replaced with a department store, some of the shops and flats.
About 1,350 underground parking spaces will be created in the existing space under Queensgate Market Hall.
This itself will undergo a revamp, although key architectural features will remain unchanged.
Its internal facilities will get an upgrade and there will be attractive upper terraces,
* inked to a double-level walkway, which will snake through the whole redeveloped area, linking the market hall to New Street, the Shambles and King Street.
The current steps down from the Piazza down to Queensgate will be replaced by a footbridge sweeping over the ring road and connecting the Piazza area to the university campus.
Most the area between New Street and the £50m Kingsgate Centre will be pedestrianised and attractive public spaces will be created.
The scheme is the result of several years of planning by the council.
Kirklees presented a set of seven options for redeveloping the area in 2004 and asked the public for their views.
The market hall, built in 1970, is the only building in western Europe to have its roof held up by 21 mushroom-shaped supports, called hyperbolic parabaloids.
It also has unique ceramic sculptures on its external wall running alongside the Queensgate ring road.
The listings were granted by Department of Culture, Media and Sport last year - and Kirklees Council had to go back to the drawing board.
Clr Sims said: "We have listened to what the public said in the consultations on the earlier options.
"They came down overwhelmingly - more than 70% - in favour of a large regeneration of the library and Piazza area.
"They also made it very clear that they wanted to retain the architectural and heritage splendour of the town.
"This proposal fits the bill for what they told us they want."
The Queensgate Revival is just one part of a huge effort to bring Huddersfield into the 21st century.
Other developments include 12-acre The Waterfront development on Chapel Hill, featuring apartments, offices, bars, restaurants and a hotel.
A transformation of St George's Square and St George's Warehouse near the railway station are also planned.
The Media Centre, on Northumberland Street, is also due to expand and the council is exploring the potential of developing new projects on Leeds Road to link the Galpharm Stadium to the town centre.
Clr Sims said: "There is immense interest from developers. Huddersfield is a town in which they want to invest."
The plans - and an architectural model of the Queensgate Revival - will go on show at the library from October 16 to November 12.
People will be able to register their comments by writing to FREEPOST, Kirklees Talkback, Corporate Development Unit, Civic Centre 3, Huddersfield, HD1 2RP.
Alternatively, they can log on to www.kirklees.gov.uk/queensgate