TWO key developments set to transform the face of Southend’s seafront are finally edging towards fruition.

Developers behind the £50million Seaway leisure complex this week submitted revised plans for the development which will bring an 11-screen IMAX Empire Cinema, 20-lane Hollywood Bowl, 80-bed Travelodge Hotel, restaurants and a new public square, with 555 car parking spaces in a new multi-storey building.

And those behind the prominent £100million Marine Plaza scheme are also steaming ahead with plans for a hotel, 282 flats along with shops and restaurants on the landmark seafront site, opposite the Kursaal.

The Inner London Group has already cleared the site, demolishing the Foresters Arms and other buildings on the site and are now looking at bulldozing remaining derelict homes at 31/33 Southchurch Avenue.

Seaway developers Turnstone Estates, say they have listened to concerns from Southend Council planning team about the shape of the proposed buildings, making them more vertical than the original designs.

If approved, there will be three main buildings on the site comprising a six-storey hotel, a three-to-six storey leisure building with cinema and a multi-storey car park. In addition, there will several smaller food and drink units.

An assessment by property consultants Carter Jones of the impact of two developments on the busy seafront says Marine Plaza, just 250 metres east of Seaway is “likely to greatly influence the character of Southend Seafront”. Together, however, the consultants conclude that studies show the impact of the two schemes on transport, air quality, ecology and recreational pressure are “unlikely to be significant.”

Carole Mulroney, councillor responsible for the environment and planning, said: “I think the developments, when you look at them in the round will be good.

“People will probably be pleased to see that something is moving because that site was moth balled for several years and blighted that corner so people will welcome the fact the development is taking place.

“Generally we are concerned about the town centre and want to make sure there are good links between the town centre and the seafront

“We’ve got a lot of problems in the High Street but the new flats there will increase the number of people and rejuvenate the High Street. If planning has a clear view that this a s good prospect for the area we would want to see any development that has planning permission to go forward and not stagnate the area.”

Ms Mulroney added: “Marine Plaza has been idle for six years and Seaway has been hanging around for a long time as well. People don’t want to see building sites.

“Southend is what it is and people love to come for days trips but if people want to come and stay that’s good for the town as well.

“We need developments that attract people but I would be sad if we do all that and forget about the day tripper. August was the best for day trippers coming to the pier.”