Investment News | 16 August 2023

Plans lodged for major Friar Gate Goods Yard transformation

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Major plans have been submitted to create hundreds of new homes, as well as commercial space, on the site of the historic Friar Gate Goods Yard.

Wavensmere Homes and Clowes Developments have lodged an application with Derby City Council for full planning consent, as well as a listed building application.

The proposals involve creating  276 homes on the 11.5-acre site and breathing new life into two landmark Grade II listed buildings – the Bonded Warehouse and Engine House – to create over 110,000 sq ft of commercial space.

James Dickens, managing director of Wavensmere Homes, said: “This is the most comprehensive planning application we have ever submitted.

“The opportunity to work collaboratively to reanimate this landmark city centre site is an honour and the plans showcase our vision, fine attention to detail, and bold investment into this nationally important regeneration project.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the city council’s officers, councillors, and wider stakeholders, as this planning application is considered.”

The plans involve a painstaking restoration of the 19th Century Bonded Warehouse and Engine House, which could deliver a total of 111,275 sq ft of flexible offices, health and fitness space, a restaurant/café, together with a regional sales centre for Wavensmere Homes.

The proposals also include extensive new areas of public open space, including play spaces and pocket parks.

A new multi-purpose public realm and community space is also proposed for the elevated area adjacent to Friar Gate Bridge, with retention of some of the original railway arch facades.

New vehicular, pedestrian and cycle access would be created at various points around the site, from Uttoxeter New Road, Great Northern Way, and Friar Gate, with the Mick Mack cycling route also extended.

James said: “We have fully 3D modelled the entirety of the Bonded Warehouse and Engine House, which has enabled us to present how the buildings could be carefully brought back to life.

“The context of the new homes and several acres of new public open space are also fully illustrated.”

Friar Gate Goods Yard has been in the ownership of the Clowes family for over 40 years, with a number of options for redevelopment proposed but not progressed, due to heritage constraints and commercial viability.

In the run up to the applications being submitted, Wavensmere Homes and Clowes developments worked with Glancy Nicholls Architects and Pegasus Group to incorporate the views of more than 200 local public consultation responses into the plans for the redevelopment of the derelict site.

James said: “When we first revealed our indicative plans during the public consultation process, we received a pleasing amount of interest from prospective operators of the health and fitness centre, office space, and the restaurant/café – all of which will be within the Bonded Warehouse.

“We also have a database of over 500 prospective purchasers wishing to buy one of the townhouses, indicating the pent-up demand and appeal.”

Wavensmere Homes already has a track record of delivering high-quality residential schemes in Derby.

The company is currently delivering the £175 million Nightingale Quarter scheme, which is being created on the former Derbyshire Royal Infirmary site.

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