Plans for first phase of £650m scheme tipped for green light

How the new pavilion will look

The opening phase of the huge Island Quarter site in Nottingham city centre has been tipped to be given planning consent.

Planning chiefs have said that Conygar, the developer behind the the £650m scheme, should be able to start building Phase 1A – a building called Canal Turn.

The final decision will be made at Nottingham City Council’s planning committee meeting next Wednesday (September 23).

The new pavilion-style facility next to the canal basin area of the site will feature two restaurants, an event spact and a rooftop terrace. The scheme will also include a bandstand and public realm space.

Richard Watson, director of Conygar Nottingham who is overseeing development plans, said: “Outline planning consent was granted in April 2019 and we’ve been working closely with the council on the Section 106 agreement.

“Conygar is now proceeding with a detailed planning application for phase 1A which is this exciting new pavilion overlooking the canal on The Island Quarter.

“Conygar has been working closely with the architects and design teams to develop these plans, not only for the first phase but also for the bigger site as well. The site will create a worldwide destination for Nottingham which will provide year-round interest and community facilities which can be used from dawn until dusk.”

James Dilley, director of architect Jestico+Whiles which has worked on Canal Turn, said: “The layers of cultural and historic legacy of this site go on for decades if not centuries.

“What we’re producing is a pavilion that evokes the memory of the industrial and railway age – something which looks as if it’s a legacy element that’s been left on the quayside of a working canal and will blend with that history while providing incredibly up to date and current facilities for the future.”

Robert Ware said: “We’ve been working very closely with the council, the planning department and all the different stakeholders to redevelop this site into a whole mixture of properties that people can use, be it student accommodation, residential accommodation, the hotel or rented accommodation.

“The site has been available for 25 years for somebody to regenerate and Nottingham has a huge history and a fantastic brand name – there’s a core business ethic here and we wish to build on that.

“The Island Quarter will be of huge benefit to the local economy and will create thousands of jobs during the build phase and beyond.”

The overall plans for the 40-acre site will bring new homes, grade A office space, creative spaces, a hotel with PRS and co-working space, a ‘linear’ park and vibrant community and event space as well as student accommodation to the city.

Paul Seddon, director of planning and regeneration at Nottingham City Council, said: “The Island Quarter has been vacant for far too long. It is part of our wider city centre – it’s very visible and has perhaps been a symbol of our city in previous years.

“This project is a significant part of the once-in-a-generation regeneration of Nottingham and as we move into challenging times, seeing this site progress over the next decade will be critical for the city.”

Cllr David Mellen, leader of Nottingham City Council said: “The Island Quarter is right on my doorstep as a Dales councillor and I have been really pleased to see progress made on the site, with these plans surely a taste of what’s to come.

“People have been rightly worried about whether redevelopment across the country will stay on track or start at all during the COVID pandemic, and I hope these latest plans for Nottingham’s Southside announced today help answer that unequivocally: this is a growing city, a city changing for the better and a city investors like Conygar have great confidence in.”

Richard Bennett from the Canal and River Trust, said: “The canal is already a great green-blue corridor within the city and the council is keen on sustainable transport routes. The canal and The Island Quarter will provide that great east-west route and it provides that bit of beauty on the doorstep of all those businesses and communities that we have here in Nottingham.”