East Square Leisure Development

A new mixed-use development in the heart of Basildon to include a 10-screen cinema, retail and leisure space. The existing two-storey retail units on the site have been neglected and so will be demolished, with the aim of revitalising an underused end of the high street with the new development. 

The superstructure has been designed as a composite steel frame with concrete filled metal decking. The upper levels extend out beyond the ground floor footprint by up to 4m using cantilevered beams. The main cinema auditorium is a 26m x 23m x 15m high column-free space that is framed by long spanning beams and slender perimeter columns.

The acoustic specifications were challenging to meet and required careful consideration of the isolation details between the adjacent auditoria as well as the retail space below.

We designed the surface water strategy which aims to reduce the current peak flows from site and improve the water quality, following the guidance in place from Essex County Council. The design peak flow rates, agreed with the Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA), have been reduced as close as possible to greenfield rates by using a complex flow control device and a below ground attenuation tank in East Square. The design also includes a vortex separator device to treat the run-off flows, ensuring that pollutants are managed at source. 

The new building is within the easement zone of Anglian Water (AW) assets, therefore a build over agreement was submitted to and approved by AW to coordinate the foundations proposal with the public sewer network. 

We also undertook a Transport Assessment and a separate Transport Plan and as a result set out the existing and proposed trip rates to and from the site. TRACC and TRICS software allowed us to determine the walking, cycling and public transport catchment areas to the development.

Shell and core completed 2021, Cinema due to open in 2022.

Project Information


Basildon Borough Council


Pollard Thomas Edwards




Pollard Thomas Edwards