|Details of Westfield's KidZania Revealed|
"Reality theme park" could attract one million visitors a year
Details have been revealed of the children's education and entertainment centre KidZania, which is due to open at Westfield at the end of next year.
KidZania, which is costing £20 million to build. will be a "reality theme park" with its own city centre, including streets and vehicles, where children can take on jobs and earn money in the centre's own currency KidZos.
The town will have its own university and workplaces, all at two thirds size, such as vets' surgeries, cockpits of planes, banks and TV studios, each of which will be sponsored by a well known company.
KidZania will be created in an extension within a two storey extension of Westfield at roof level space, which was given the go ahead by Hammersmith and Fulham Council.
Along with additional retail space including the expansion of Marks and Spencer, Westfield says it will lead to the creation of around 400 local jobs.
KidZania was launched in 1999 by Mexican businessman Xavier Lopez, and it has since expanded to 12 sites including Tokyo, Dubai, Bangkok and the only other European site, Lisbon, with another 11 in the pipeline alongside Westfield.
The Shepherd's Bush site will operated by a leisure company called Longshot, founded by entrepreneurs Joel Cadbury and Ollie Vigors, which has previously run Soho members’ club the Groucho, the Soho health club, gym Third Space and pubs including the Admiral Codrington in Chelsea.
KidZania could also provide a further boost to our local economy, with the operatore hoping London’s KidZania will attract up to one million visitors a year.