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Planning permission secured for Northern Civic Quarter in Leeds

On behalf of Idé Real Estate, Turley has secured planning permission and listed building consent for the Northern Civic Quarter, a £62m project to develop a new business and lifestyle destination in Leeds city centre.

We advised on planning, strategic communications, sustainability, economics and heritage aspects of the development proposals which will create more than 355 jobs during the three-year construction phase and nearly 1,025 more once the site is fully operational.

Idé Real Estate is transforming the listed former council buildings off Millennium Square into a campus-like community with:

  • 54,000 sq ft of flexible office and multifunctional space around the Thoresby and Leonardo buildings, formerly a Victorian school and print works
  • A 173-bed premium lifestyle hotel in the 2 Great George Street building, also a former Victorian school
  • A technology-led new-build 166-bed lifestyle hotel
  • High quality, family-friendly public realm and two new open and accessible courtyards

The regeneration scheme secures the long-term future of the heritage site by bringing the Thoresby, Leonardo and Great George Street buildings back to life in a respectful way.
The provision of new serviced office space supports the growth of business start-ups and scale-ups in Leeds, a need identified by the council in its development plan.
The city is also seeing significant growth in business and leisure tourism with around 30m visitors per year but lacks premium visitor accommodation.
On Thursday, December 6, Leeds City Council’s City Plans Panel agreed to grant planning permission for Idé Real Estate’s applications subject to the completion of a Section 106 legal agreement.
The site neighbours the main public square and forms the gateway to the emerging Innovation District, a £1bn scheme to build on the city’s strengths in knowledge-based industries such as financial services, healthcare, data analytics and digital technologies. 
Site preparation is set to begin in spring with major development work underway by autumn. It is scheduled for completion by summer 2022.

IDE new build hotel
Idé Real Estate has consulted widely with Leeds City Council, Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, Nexus University of Leeds, Leeds Beckett University, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, and the business and arts communities.
Ronan Faherty, Chief Executive of Idé Real Estate, said: “We have been working closely with Leeds City Council and other city region stakeholders on our proposals and are delighted to have secured planning permission and listed building consent for our development.
“We specialise in heritage buildings because of their history and architecture and their contribution to a diverse and rich environment. Heritage buildings can bring their challenges but we enjoy regenerating and reenergising them to provide a sustainable future.
“We work in partnership with local councils and operators and Leeds is a perfect example of this approach. We have been impressed with Leeds City Council and its vision for inclusive growth.
“We believe Leeds is one of the best investment opportunities in the UK today with its welcoming people, strong institutions, dynamic business community and vibrant cultural life, a position endorsed by Channel 4’s decision to locate its national headquarters in the city.”

Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council, said: “We are very pleased to see approval given to this scheme, which will revitalise these historic listed buildings and provide significant new investment in our city centre.

“It will enhance our hotel offer, create over a thousand new jobs and support new and growing businesses. The new public spaces will be welcoming areas ideal for people and families to spend time, so we look forward to following this scheme’s development with keen interest.”

Peter Rowe, Associate Director at Turley, said: “This is an exciting project for our northern team to work on during a period of huge growth and investment for Leeds.

“We are proud to have secured planning permission for the development that will transform these important listed buildings into an exciting new city centre destination for residents, visitors and businesses, shaping a better place to live, work and visit.”

Image courtesy of Idé Real Estate

7 December 2018