The University will seek public views on its 15-year, £1bn investment plan for its campuses in the city centre and at Leahurst in Cheshire.

The masterplan includes a series of new-builds and redevelopment projects to enhance the University’s estate; some of these, including the Digital Innovation Facility designed by IBI, and a £21m Arts & Humanities Centre designed by Ellis Williams Architects, have already come forward.

The University appointed Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios for the masterplan brief in December 2017, ahead of two other shortlisted architects; K2 with Reiach & Hall; and BDP.

Parts of the masterplan include introducing a central green within the campus, and improving existing public space. To achieve this, the University is proposing to remove smaller car parks within its estate and replace these with three multi-storey car parks towards the periphery of the campus.

As well as its central Liverpool campus, the University has also pledged “significant investment” in its Leahurst campus, home to its veterinary institute; these will include major developments for equine care, expanded research facilities, and a redeveloped student skills zone.

Consultation events are due to be held in the coming weeks, beginning on 29 April. Displays will be on show from 29 April to 10 May on the ground floor of the Guild of Students’ building, while representatives from the architect will be available between 12-1pm and 2-3pm on 1 May and 10 May at the same location.

A public consultation session will also take place on 1 May between 5-7pm in the Bronte Youth and Community Centre on Trowbridge Street. Boards and plans will also be available online from 29 April.

The University’s vice-chancellor, Dame Janet Beer, said: “We are proud of our place in the city and of our architectural heritage. Our plans are sensitive to this and provide exciting new opportunities to further enhance the appearance of our campuses and their surroundings.

“Whilst our estate already boasts some world-class facilities and wonderful spaces, we need continued investment to best support our ambitious future plans. This masterplan provides an exciting, clear and coherent vision for our university campuses and includes significant investment which will have a number of positive regional impacts, not least on the economy.

“I’m keen to hear what staff, students and the general public think of these proposals.”

News
Liverpool to look for views on blueprint for city centre growth

Upper Central – covering 56 acres in the heart of Liverpool city centre – is to be the subject of a draft masterplan to create an international standard gateway site to a £2bn flagship regeneration scheme.

Running from Central Station to Liverpool Science Park and Lime Street to Bold Street, Upper Central is seen as key to the future development of the city’s blossoming Knowledge Quarter (KQ Liverpool).

And Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet will be asked next Friday, 5 July to approve that a public consultation begins on a Spatial Regeneration Framework (SRF) to help shape the future direction of the area.

Its focus will be how Upper Central can become a magnet for digital, tech and creative sectors with the aim of providing three key goals :-

1. To maximise the opportunities of 2.5million sq.ft of new developments (larger than Liverpool ONE), with potential to create up to 7,000 new jobs.

2. A new sustainable, walkable and recognisable gateway location within the city, promoting pedestrian movement, increased dwell time and a positive first impression to millions of residents and visitors arriving into the city centre at Lime Street or Central stations.

3. To ensure high quality public realm that creates a place that is distinctly Liverpudlian and attractive to occupiers, residents and investors.

Stakeholder feedback on the draft SRF identified a need to re-brand the area. As a result a new website www.uppercentral.co.uk will be launched to coincide with the start of the public consultation.

Led by a team of independent planning experts, the draft SRF has looked at how best to redevelop the Lime Street area around the Adelphi Hotel, Central Station and Mount Pleasant whilst dovetailing Liverpool John Moores University’s Copperas Hill site, plans for the Fabric District and various private sector schemes such as Circus Liverpool at the old Lewis’s building.

To achieve this future development the draft Upper Central SRF is focused on eight key themes:

• Creation of a True Gateway for Liverpool
• Improving linkages to the rest of the city centre and pedestrian experience
• A mix of uses to create a quality of place and identity
• Striving for high quality design, appropriate massing and landmark buildings
• Provision of high-quality infrastructure
• Holistic view of development context and creating a new city district
• Preserving and enhancing heritage assets
• Delivery and collaboration

A major aspiration identified in the draft SRF is how to create a super crossing at Ranelagh Place, a new pedestrian experience along Renshaw Street and to promote a new pedestrian route to Lime Street Station from Copperas Hill to allow for improved access to the Fabric District and Paddington Village.

Liverpool City Council, which recently acquired Central Station shopping centre and is overseeing public realm proposals for St George’s Plateau, as part of the £45m city centre connectivity scheme, has also set out an ambition to redevelop the Mount Pleasant Car Park area to create an international standard gateway for the KQ Liverpool Mayoral Development Zone which currently employs 7% of the city’s workforce.

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