2017 has been a big year for city living in Derby.
Historically, Derby’s main employers have been situated in the suburbs with the centre being home to civic and retail uses resulting in less housing being needed in the centre.
However, in 2014 the City Council, Marketing Derby and several influential private companies, recognised that without people living in the city centre, Derby could never fully flourish, and started to market the opportunities available, explaining the city’s economic strength, high quality of life and low city living stock at events such as MIPIM.
Following £2 billion of investment, the city centre is now a desirable place to live, providing residents with restaurants, entertainment and great connectivity, and attracting residents young and old. Derby’s seeing evidence of businesses returning as they recognise the benefits of having a presence.
Developers and investors have started to respond to this change.
Student schemes on Cathedral Road, Friar Gate and Agard Street (750 new units) are bringing a sense of vibrancy, whilst apartments on Cathedral Green, Brook Street, Castleward and Friar Gate (430 new units) provide new customers for the shops and restaurants around them, whilst being desirable enough to sell out before showrooms even opened!
And what next? Middleton House is set to become luxury apartments in the heart of the city centre, Agard Street, now a main gateway into Derby, has the potential to be a true cityscape with several significant schemes, a mix of student and private accommodation, in planning at the moment, a proposal for Derby’s tallest building is imminent, to be situated on Phoenix Street which shows a statement of confidence in the city centre, not to mention new schemes on Cathedral Road, Mansfield Road, Raynesway and Ashbourne Road, all of which have received planning permission recently (another 450 new units).
For the first time ever in Derby, 2017 has seen more housing built in the city centre than in the rest of the city centre combined and the momentum shows no signs of stopping. Look out for more cranes on the skyline bringing more vibrancy to the streets in 2018.