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.
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.