DEVELOPERS behind a £12million “chic” housing complex in the Horseshoe Common area say the scheme will help transform the crime hotspot into a desirable place to live for high-flying professionals.

A showcase apartment inside the Citrus Building in Madeira Road has been unveiled to prospective buyers following an official launch on Friday.

The complex, which will consist of 64 apartments and an eatery once completed, is the first residential and commercial property to come on stream from the Bournemouth Development Company (BDC), which is working in partnership with Bournemouth Borough Council to deliver its Town Centre Vision.

Due to be completed at the end of the summer, the five-storey building will include a range of one, two and three bedroom apartments, ranging from £125,000 to £350,000.

Duncan Johnston, BDC development director said the Citrus Building, so called because of its bright orange, yellow and green exterior, would help transform the area.

He said: “This is an architecturally impressive building, with beautiful apartments, which will help rejuvenate the town centre and strengthen the area as a sought-after location.”

He added: “We’re targeting first-time buyers and young professionals who want to be part of a vibrant new development.”

Representatives from the planning and property sector, the developer Morgan Sindall Investments, Bourne-mouth Borough council, and Bourne-mouth Chamber of Commerce and Trade attended the opening.

John Beesley, leader of the borough council, described the project as a “landmark scheme”.

“This investment and the new residents it will bring is the first phase of what we hope will be a regenerated Horseshoe Common,” he said.

“This is why we are doing the works around Horse-shoe Common – it is all linked so we create a good sustainable part of the town.”

The complex, at the former Leyton Mount car park, is the first in a series of developments outlined in the council’s Town Centre Vision.

Work is currently under way for an accommodation block for Arts University Bournemouth students.

BDC is also preparing plans for a residential development at Berry Court and looking at further schemes at Durley Road and St Stephens.