A £4.2m plan to clear land for a potential £200m Grade A office scheme in Liverpool City Centre has been given the green light.
Liverpool City Council’s planning committee today approved an application to remediate land at Pall Mall, in the city’s Commercial District, which has been earmarked for a proposed 400,000 sq ft development project, led by Kier Property and CTP.
The remediation works, to be undertaken by contractor Willmott Dixon, are expected to take around eight months and is being supported by a £3.5m grant from the Local Growth Fund.
Local Growth Funding is awarded to the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and invested through the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority through its Strategic Investment Fund.
Enabling works will include a £1.25m scheme to relocate a substation on site, which will be fully operational by March 2020 to serve future development.
A planning application is expected to be submitted by Kier Property and CTP shortly which will outline a three-phase development.
The proposed Pall Mall scheme, to the rear of the old Exchange Station site, will feature three office buildings, a hotel, and around 80,200 sq ft of public space all, centred around a new green square for workers, residents and the local community to use.
The open space, to be developed in the scheme’s first phase, would see a doubling in the number of trees and planting than currently in existence, with additional public realm incorporated into the high-quality design.
Once completed, the development would result in an overall increase in the amount of public space with new pedestrian walkways and public seating to accompany a pavilion that could be used as a café or restaurant. Ground floor space is earmarked for complementary retail or leisure units to animate the public realm.
Kier Property and CTP has appointed architect Allies & Morrison alongside award-winning landscape architects Re-Form to design the scheme which formed part of a public consultation exercise last July.
The proposed Pall Mall scheme has been identified as a key project for the future growth of the city’s Commercial District and its ability to meet current demands and attract blue-chip businesses, with the supply of available Grade A office space at an all-time low.
Liverpool City Council has appointed highly experienced planning team, led by Arup, to produce a Spatial Regeneration Framework (SRF) to masterplan the future development of the City’s Commercial District.
The SRF, which will look at building design guidelines and public realm strategy, will also identify opportunities to attract new commercial investment – such as the Pall Mall scheme – and to enhance connections across the district and to the wider City Centre, including Peel Land and Property’s nearby £5bn Liverpool Waters scheme.
Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson, said: “The proposed Pall Mall scheme is of huge importance to the development of our Commercial District as we need Grade A office space to attract companies and highly skilled jobs to the city.
“I’m delighted we have the green light to begin clearing the site in readiness for the next stage of this scheme which if approved will deliver a much needed high quality green square and new public realm for workers and residents to enjoy throughout the year.
“Judging by the designs it would set a new benchmark for our open spaces and help shape the wider development of the district.”
Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, Jake Berry MP, said: “This government is committed to boosting economic growth across the whole of the Northern Powerhouse and building an economy which is fit for the future.
“This £3.5m investment from the Local Growth Fund enables another step forward in the City Region’s development and will help clear the way for a rejuvenated Pall Mall area becoming home to businesses, jobs and new public spaces in heart of Liverpool.”
Tom Gilman, managing director of Kier Property (North), said: “This is an important milestone for Pall Mall and Liverpool’s Central Business District, bringing the development one step closer. Liverpool City Council’s reclamation and enabling works are essential to the development of the site which will provide a new and enhanced space for those working, living and visiting the city centre.
“We have been working hard with our team, other stakeholders and vitally the local community, to progress our development plans and look forward to submitting our planning application for the first phase of development shortly. Our aim for the new Pall Mall scheme is for it to be a destination space in the city centre that will create new jobs and training opportunities.”
Bill Addy, chief executive, Liverpool BID Company, said: “Our investment in the Commercial District SRF demonstrates our ongoing commitment in safeguarding the future growth of Commercial District BID for the benefit of our levy payers and wider city economy. I am very pleased to see that we are taking a step closer to seeing the ambitious vision for Pall Mall be realised. The lack of Grade A office stock is a major concern for the sustainability of the district, and the Pall Mall scheme goes a long way in addressing that.
“Among the many ambitions of the SRF, this exciting masterplan also aims to attract investment into the area, promote sustainable employment, and improve its connectivity with other key developments across the city region, such as Liverpool Waters. We will be continue to work with the city council and our partners in the private sector to realise this vision over the coming years.”