The Harris Partnership is to redesign Allen Tod Architecture’s masterplan for the former Yorkshire Chemical Works in Leeds for new owner Blenheim Developments
According to the developer the original proposals for the ‘key’ waterside plot in Kirkstall - which were approved almost six years ago - no longer ‘made sense in this current market’.
Allen Tod, which has since re-emerged as Calls Architecture after going into liquidation, proposed a residential-led scheme for then site owner Gladedale.
Paul Mitchell, the chairman of the Harris Partnership, said although he would sticking to the original principals of the Allen Tod masterplan, the team intended to re-submit a revised planning application which would substanitally alter the proposals for the island site between the River Aire and the Leeds/Liverpool canal.
He told the AJ: ‘We will build on the concept of the [existing] scheme. But the market has completely changed so we will be reducing the number of flats and moving towards more family homes.’
He added: ‘We are going through a research period to establish what the new mix may be and we don’t envisage [there will be much to show] before the end of the summer.
‘It is a key nodal site which opens up the waterfront and needs carefully thinking about.’
David Aspland, development director at Savills which purchased the plot for Blenheim and is retained to market the scheme, said: ‘No other site in Leeds can boast such a unique position, the site has frontage from both the Leeds Liverpool Canal and the River Aire.’
He continued: ‘It has great potential and it took a developer like Blenheim to commit to the opportunity. Although the current masterplan is commercially challenging in this market, the potential and location of the site make this an exciting opportunity to be involved in.’
Blenheim is talking to a number of potential occupiers and looking into the potential of working in a joint venture. The AJ understands further ‘specialist’ architects may be needed for some aspects of the housing work.