DRAMATIC new images have been released to show how the £500m Centenary Quay development could look when completed over the next 12 years.

Computer wizardry has been used to show how Woolston ’s riverside will be transformed into a vibrant new part of the city.

Rising from the derelict 31-acre site of the former Vosper Thornycroft (VT) shipbuilding yard the £500m development will become home to as many as 3,000 residents.

Stepping down from a civic square, surrounded by new shops, bars and restaurants, the waterfront will be opened up to the public with a water taxi shuttling back and forth across River Itchen to the city centre.

Three apartment towers, up to 25 storeys high with penthouses costing up to £1m each, will dominate the riverside and create a new skyline for the east of the city.

More than 1,600 homes, mostly flats, are planned in total. A quarter will be for rent or shared ownership through housing associations.

Work has just started on the second phase of the Centenary Quay development, which will add 163 homes as well as a new library and 80-place nursery at the entrance from Victoria Road.

The homes are already being sold “off-plan” starting from £132,500 for a one-bedroom apartment, from £157,500 for a two-bedroom apartment and from £235,000 for a three-bedroom house.

Councillors last month gave the green light for a further 329 flats, the public square and a 60,000 square foot supermarket bringing 225 jobs. It is thought Morrisons is being lined up for the store.

It is expected this third phase of homes, which will start to be marketed next year, will take around four years to sell.

Developer Crest Nicholson will then bring forward plans for a block of 110 flats and the landmark waterfront towers as the next two phases of the development.

Planning permission for the towers will not be sought for at least five years.

Residents have generally welcomed the regeneration of the area although many remain concerned about the number of homes being built and impact of the extra traffic.

The Hampshire Chamber of Commerce says it will breathe new life into the existing Woolston district centre.

The city council and the Government regeneration agency that owns part of the adjacent site are also in talks with interested parties to revive a planned marine manufacturing quarter with deep water berths, set to create up to 700 jobs.

Plans for US superyacht builder Palmer Johnson to move onto the site collapsed two years ago in the downturn.