Planning permission has been granted to CEG for its 15,534 sq m, seven storey office building, kick-starting the first phase of the ambitious Kirkstall Forge redevelopment in Leeds.
The 23-hectare brownfield site will be transformed into a thriving mixed-use community in a wooded, riverside setting. Ultimately it will deliver new homes, a high quality office park, shops, restaurants, a gym, crèche and other facilities.
Planning committee members unanimously granted planning permission and Nick Lee from CEG said: “A lot of hard work has gone into ensuring this will be an exemplar scheme and the team is delighted with the positive comments made by planning committee members in relation to the design and overall vision for the site. This decision means we can be on site early in the New Year with the first phase of development.”
The new railway station is set to open on the site later this year, providing connectivity to Leeds City Centre in just minutes and acting as a catalyst for extensive employment and residential opportunities and this first commercial development will meet the pent-up demand for high quality flagship office space.
Developer Commercial Estates Group (CEG) has already undertaken demolition and remediation of the Forge, which is one of the oldest industrialised sites in the UK. Planning permission was secured in April 2014 for the railway station, access road and associated infrastructure and this work will complete later this year, paving the way for 1,050 new homes, 300,000 sq ft of offices and 100,000 sq ft of retail, leisure and community space.
Jon Kenny, director of CEG, said: “Ultimately, the Kirkstall Forge development will offer prime office space and new homes with fantastic facilities in a stunning riverside, woodland location with unsurpassed transport connections into Leeds, Bradford and the Yorkshire Dales.”
This is one of the largest regeneration schemes and the most ambitious project in the north of England. £300m is programmed for investment in the site over the next five years, creating more than 2,400 new jobs and enabling almost 10,000 people to live and work on this site by 2020.
The development has also secured the national Placemaking Award for Best Mixed-use Development 2015 – The judging panel, which includes urban designers, planners, housebuilders, regeneration companies, the Prince’s Regeneration Trust and English Heritage, said they loved the scheme’s scale, ambition, partnership and environmental values.
Further reserved matters planning applications will be submitted in the coming months for the first phase of residential development.