City to offer 15-year vision for Liverpool waterfront

Two years after UNESCO deleted Liverpool waterfront from its list of World Heritage Sites the city council is to now offer a new vision for its continued development. Tony McDonough reports

Liverpool waterfront
A new masterpan is to be drawn up for Liverpool waterfront. Picture by Tony McDonough


Senior Liverpool councillors are set to approve the preparation of a masterplan to guid development on the city’s waterfront for the next 10 to 15 years.

In summer 2021 UNESCO deleted Liverpool waterfront from its list of World Heritage Sites. This followed a near decade-long row over the height of new buildings and came to a head over the construction of Everton’s new stadium at Liverpool Waters.

Now the council will set out to show it can maintain and improve on what it believes is a world class waterfront – whether UNESCO says so or not.

Next Tuesday (September 19), the city’s council’s cabinet will be asked to green light the search for a team of “planning and placemaking specialists” to prepare a strategy and masterplan.

This strategy will cover around six miles, from Festival Gardens in the south end of the city to the Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock in the north.

Much of this stretch is already well developed. The world famous Three Graces at the Pier head need no introduction. ACC Liverpool, Royal Albert Dock and the Museum of Liverpool are now established landmarks.

But to come also the development of the former Festival Gardens as well as Kings Dock next to Royal Albert Dock.

And National Museums Liverpool and Tate Liverpool are currently leading on regeneration projects at their Royal Albert Dock buildings, including the historic Canning Dock.

North of the Pier Head there is still plenty of scope for new development. Work on a new Isle of Man Ferry terminal is well advanced and the city council is hoping to attract a private investor to take forward a new cruise liner terminal to replace the existing facility.

Peel has plans to continue to create new neighbourhoods in Central Docks and has already unveiled a project to build a new park.

If approved by the cabinet the council will issue a tender for the appointment of “an exceptional team with outstanding expertise at an international level” later this year to devise the masterplan.

Although separate, it will also overlap with the council’s policy on the height of buildings, a thorny issue that led to the split from UNESCO.

There will also be engagement with interested parties such as Liverpool BID Company and the Canal and River Trust as well as major landowners such as Grosvenor and Peel Land and Property.


Liverpool, Royal Albert Dock, city centre, skyline, waterfront
Liverpool”s Royal Albert Dock and the ACC Liverpool complex
Southern Grasslands
Southern Grasslands has been created on a former landfill site at Festival Gardens
Bird’s eye view of the new Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock


While Liverpool’s waterfront is a thriving destination, the authority recognises there are challenges around inequality and deprivation in adjoining neighbourhoods.

In respect of public art, a ‘City Centre and Waterfront Public Art Strategy’ will be scoped out and the council is also seeking to appoint a team to help deliver a new residential design guide.

Cllr Nick Small, Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for City Development, said: “The Liverpool waterfront needs no introduction.

READ MORE: ‘Merseyside needs more devolution’ says Lord Heseltine

READ MORE:Businesses clamour for spot at Labour Conference

“It is an asset, it has few equals for its history, cultural offer and infrastructure and for its breath-taking architecture. It is one of the principal reasons Liverpool is one of the most visited cities in the UK and why it’s one of the most filmed in Europe.

“Such is its dynamic offer, Liverpool’s waterfront supports a huge chunk of our visitor, retail and commercial economies, supporting tens of thousands of jobs and we need to be just as mindful of how we shape its future as we are proud of its past.

“The appointment of the team to lead on the development of Liverpool’s waterfront strategy and masterplan has the potential to have a significant impact on the city’s profile and development over the next decade.”

You might also like More from author

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Username field is empty.