A FAST food restaurant could be built in the middle of a town on the site of a multi-storey car park if plans are given the green light.

Submitted proposals outline intentions to build a McDonald’s restaurant and drive-thru on the site of the Pendle Rise Shopping Centre car park in the heart of Nelson.

Permission to demolish the eyesore was granted by Pendle Borough Council in 2016, but plans to build on the site were only submitted before Christmas.

The top level of the ‘suicide hotspot’ was blocked off in 2016 after a man had to be talked down by police three times. Fencing was also put around the perimeter on all levels of the car park after a successful campaign by community leaders.

Leader of the council Paul White said: “This has been an area of safety concern for some time and this development could improve that fact.

“It is also good to see that an international company is wanting to invest in Nelson. This is a positive development for the town.”

Plans submitted to the council also revealed that the restaurant could introduce 65 new full and part-time jobs to the area.

And while this could undoubtedly be a very good thing for the town, there are concerns over the demolition of the car park, argued Cllr Eileen Ansar.

She said: “When the top floor of the car park was closed off we noticed a decrease in footfall into the shopping centre.

“The same can be said for when the bus station closed down. I do have concerns that bringing down the car park would could further worsen this.

“That aside, any form of investment in the town is a good thing. The proposed McDonald’s would bring a younger generation into town and the creation of jobs for local people is always positive. I just hope this won’t decrease footfall which could lead to shops closing in the centre, which could in turn lead to a loss of jobs.

“It is swings and roundabouts.”

Cllr Mohammed Iqbal said the prospect of the 314-space car park being knocked down and replaced with a restaurant was a good thing for the town.

He said: “Any form of investment in the town is welcome, and this particular building is a real eyesore in the area, so it will be good to see it knocked down.

“Regeneration needs to continue and the council needs to put more work into attracting a more varied type of community when it comes to retailers.”