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Government approves Wirral Waters scheme


The 1.4 million m² Wirral Waters scheme in Liverpool was spared a lengthy delay this week following Communities Secretary Eric Pickles’ decision to refuse a public enquiry

The minister has effectively approved developer Peel Holdings’ plans for the £4.5 billion redevelopment of the Wirral and Birkenhead docks.

A string of practices including Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, HKR, Glen Howells and Skidmore Owings and Merrill (SOM) have worked on the design.

Plans for the Mersey riverside site include a number of restaurants, cafés, bars, a hotel and ‘cultural attractions’.

Lindsey Ashworth, Peel’s development director, said: ‘The ridiculous “black hole” of a planning system that we have had to suffer in the UK for more years than I can remember is finally starting to show signs of common sense.

‘The planning shackles that have been holding back progress and job creation are being loosened at long last.’


Previous story (AJ 04.08.10)

Massive Wirral Waters plans approved

Peel Group’s £4.5 billion Wirral Waters scheme, the largest planning application ever submitted in the UK, has been approved by Wirral Council’s planning committee (4 August)

The project, which is expected to take 30 years to complete, will regenerate 18 million ft² of derelict brownfield site at Birkenhead docks.

The likes of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, HKR, Skidmore Owings Merrill, and Glenn Howells have already worked on the project and more practices are likely to be appointed as the development progresses.

Councillor Andrew Hodson, Wirral Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and planning strategy, said: ‘This is a great day for Wirral. We have been working closely with Peel for almost four years to bring jobs and regeneration to the borough.’

He said the ‘total transformation’ of the waterfront site could create up to 20,000 jobs.

‘This has taken place against a backdrop of the worst recession in living memory and it is a credit to both Peel and Wirral Council that we have kept the plans moving.’

The plans must now be approved by the Government and Peel hopes to start on the site by 2012.

Approved: £4.5 billion Wirral Waters - Vittoria

Approved: £4.5 billion Wirral Waters - Vittoria

Previous story (AJ 15.12.09)

Wirral Waters becomes largest planning application in UK history

Peel Group has submitted what it claims is the UK’s biggest planning application – the £4.5 billion Wirral Waters scheme

The firm, which operates Liverpool John Lennon Airport, is seeking to build a high-density and partial high-rise development to provide 13,000 homes at Birkenhead Docks on Merseyside.

The project will be delivered in stages over the next few decades, and is expected to provide more than 4,000 construction jobs over the life of the scheme. The likes of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, HKR, Skidmore Owings Merrill, Glenn Howells and Liverpool-based architects Falconer Chester Hall have already worked on the project and a host more are likely to be appointed as the development progresses.

Peel has worked with Wirral Council, representatives from the community and other stakeholders during the past three years to develop the proposal.

Lindsey Ashworth, development director at Peel said: ‘It is Peel’s belief that Birkenhead Docks has huge potential in so many ways and Wirral Waters, together with Liverpool Waters, will completely transform the way the western end of the North West goes about its business.

‘It will redress the imbalance of the region and create what I would describe as a new super region that will further strengthen this as a destination for international business and as a place to live.’

Peel hopes the application will be considered by Wirral Council’s Planning Committee in the spring of 2010.


Readers' comments (8)

  • Peel Holdings also own City of Manchester City Airport as mentioned above plus a few others. It's easily confused in name alone with 'The' Manchester Airport. City airports former name was Barton Aerodrome and is situated west of Manchester.

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  • Merseyside would benefit much more from a regeneration of the massive stock of vacant and abandoned terraced houses it already has.

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  • yeah yeah yeah....

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  • Mmmmmm nice. Looks like Sim City.

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  • Iam originally from the wirral and i think it would make a real difference to the dock area of birkenhead, the regeneration will boost the economical area and is a huge leap in jumping out of the shadow of the neighbours over the water

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  • Dubai on Wirral?

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  • Just how many days a year does the Wirral see such azure sky's?

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  • I think this has to be good news for the Wirral. The structures look, well a little bland, but this will, if started, bring a massive boost to a run down area. I was working on the Twelve Keys plans that never got off the drawing board 15 years ago. In direct competition to this development is Liverpool Waters proposed by Peel Holdings also. Wirral does not have issues as in the Liverpool World Heritage site, so good luck to them.

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