Aviva Investors have awarded ISG the contract to create a culinary quarter at the Guildhall shopping centre in the heart of Exeter.

The £12m project sees the redevelopment of the neo-classical Guildhall into a series of high-specification restaurants.

The complex, multi-phased project will be delivered while the popular Guildhall Shopping Centre and public realm space remains open.

Retaining and conserving the Queen Street façade, ISG will carefully install piled foundations to support a two-storey steel frame superstructure to house the new restaurant facilities.

The firm will also strip out and reconfigure an existing concrete-framed shop, and add a further storey to form a roof top terraced area for diners.

Simon Green, Associate Director of Aviva Investors said: “We at Aviva Investors are really delighted to have formally signed contacts with our partners ISG so work can now fully commence on creating Exeter’s new dining quarter at Queen St.”

With the early preparatory works complete, people will start to notice the transformation taking place with the arrival of the full ISG team along with cranes and other equipment, all whilst ensuring shoppers can still fully enjoy visiting the shopping centre.”

Rob Martin, ISG’s Western regional managing director, said: “Our latest project for Aviva Investors will transform and reinvigorate this important cultural area in central Exeter.

“The scheme brings real cohesion to this busy location, creating a dining destination that unifies the historic and modern built environment at Queen Street.

“This is a keynote regeneration project and we’re delighted to be playing an important role delivering such an exciting vision for Exeter’s future.”