CONSTRUCTION is well underway on the £90 million Friars Walk site aiming to regenerate the city.

Earlier this week around some 150 tonnes of steel arrived at the site. A total of 6,000 tonnes will be used on the whole scheme.

Latest pictures of the site show building work has begun – in an effort to open by autumn 2015.

The development – backed by a £90m loan supported by Newport City Council – will create 650 jobs during construction phase, and about 1,100 jobs once complete.

Retailers expected to join include Debenham’s, Cineworld, Topshop, Next, Prezzo, Nando’s, Frankie and Benny’s, Cosmo and Chiquitos. A number have already committed to the scheme ahead of its opening.

Earlier this week Martin Tresidder, senior development manager for project developers Queensberry, told the Argus that piling has been taking place on site for the last couple of weeks.

“In the next few weeks you will start to see the structure,” he said.

He added the old Iceland building is also demolished.

Talking about some of the changes, Mr Tresidder said that stone work was being put in instead of tiles over some of the shops, and that ETFE plastic pillow-style roofing will be used.

The material is similar to that used over Newport Railway Station and is probably best known for its use at the Eden project in Cornwall.