Plans submitted for £350m development which could ‘double the size of city centre’

Illustrative plan of Water Lane

Plans for a significant 3.52 hectare derelict site in the South Bank area of Leeds to be transformed into a development including offices, retail, hotel, parking, homes and new public spaces have been submitted.

Developer CEG has now submitted a hybrid planning application for the site, which is just minutes from the new southern entrance to Leeds City Station.

Granary Wharf illustration

The application seeks detailed planning permission for two office developments with ground floor retail and leisure totalling up to 26,100 sq m and outline planning permission for mixed-use development of up to 103,900 sq m of offices, retail, leisure, hotel, health, education and community uses, parking and up to 750 new homes, along with new public spaces and landscaping.

Jon Kenny, development director at CEG, said:“The CEG team has long identified with the truly unique characteristic of the South Bank area of the city, as a place to create an exceptional living and working environment; one rich in history and architectural gems waiting to be reinvigorated.

“This is a derelict site where we can deliver a vibrant mixed-use strategic development of a critical mass and international quality that can enable this regeneration area to become a true gateway into the city, reconnecting local communities.”

CEG said that development of the South Bank area of Leeds has the potential to double the size of Leeds City Centre, creating 35,000 new jobs and thousands of new homes as part of a distinctive destination for investment, living, learning, creativity and leisure.

CEG’s development seeks to:

•        Deliver a new location for the south west of the city centre with up to 750 new homes, workplaces, shops,  cafés and restaurants

•         Provide the wider community with attractive new places to walk, rest and enjoy

•        Create thousands of new job opportunities and work in partnership with Employment Leeds to provide on-site training, education, upskilling and apprenticeship opportunities during construction to benefit local people

•        Design inspiring buildings ranging from five to 40-storeys which will put Leeds on the map as a key European destination, creating an exciting gateway arrival point to the city from the south west

•        Retain the two-storey printworks building façade as a feature within the design

•        Improve connectivity – making it easier and more attractive to walk or cycle from Holbeck to the waterfront, railway station and the city centre

•        Assess opportunities to enhance existing community facilities, including the potential for new education uses

•        Create a safe, attractive environment for employees, residents and visitors to enjoy green spaces and public plazas that are appealing and well-lit

•        Revitalise the approach to movement around the area through innovative travel planning backed up by a ground-breaking traffic microsimulation model of the city centre highway network using the internationally acclaimed Aimsun traffic modelling software.

CEG is working architects Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios (FCBStudios). They have designed a new mixed-use community which builds on the historic character of the area with landmark buildings and innovative public spaces in a key location close to Leeds City Station and the canal.

The area offers significant historic industrial character including the Giotto Towers and Temple Works to Marshall’s Mill and the Round Foundry establishing a unique heritage identity which is reflected in the new proposals on a semi-derelict site.

Alex Whitbread, partner at FCBStudios, said:FCBStudios is proud of its commitment to Leeds. It’s a privilege for us to be working with CEG on the wider South Bank proposals, which are truly a once in lifetime opportunity to transform the city for the 21st Century”

CEG has a long legacy of investing in Leeds; managing buildings at Thorpe Park and Albion Street and delivering a  £400m development at Kirkstall Forge which is set to open this autumn.