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Urbed bags Leicester regeneration project, ahead of international competition

Manchester-based masterplanner Urbed has seen off some of the world's leading urban designers to land a key regeneration project in Leicester.

The practice saw off the likes of Erick Van Egeraat, Gehl Architects, Urban Initiatives and Ash Sakula to win the competition to mastermind the development of a 4ha plot overlooking the city's Grand Union Canal.

The scheme is being backed by Blueprint, a public-private partnership between Leicester Regeneration Company and Leicester City Council which expects to bag funding from English Partnerships.

It is hoped the Urbed plan will deliver a 'social and economic regeneration through the creation of a new environmentally sustainable, leading-edge design, mixed-use neighbourhood.'

The scheme is being dubbed a 'commercially viable, human-scale development' and will contrast with the grain and size of Ian Simpson's neighbouring 39-storey skyscraper for Westbridge Living ( Simpson aims to build Leicester's tallest tower )

Charlie Baker from URBED said: 'Modern architecture seems all too often unable to make memorable places, only individual buildings in space, and not often at a human scale.

'We are delighted that Blueprint have given us the opportunity to challenge the current orthodoxy, and to put people at the heart of Leicester Waterside.'

by Richard Waite

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