DEMOLITION work on the former Woodsides building in The Square in Ballyclare began this week.
Planning permission was approved at Monday night’s council Planning and Consultation Committee for the building to be replaced by retail units and apartments.
Fencing has gone around the former department store and preparation work to take it down began this week.
Ballyclare Chamber of Trade welcomed the redevelopment of the site.
Darren Black, president of the chamber said: “We would be concerned that the new development does not go ahead and the building is demolished and nothing built in its place.
“Given the history and heritage of the site and its location in the town it is important it does not become a run-down site and is instead used to attract people and business into the town.”
John Morrow, of Morrow contracts which handles the work could not say when construction work would begin on the residential and retail development given the current economic climate.
He said: “We are taking down the building with a view to developing it at some stage.”