‘Super team’ of planning experts to oversee Liverpool’s £2bn Knowledge Quarter Gateway

GVA HOW Planning, K2 Architects and Planit-IE have been selected via tender to develop a Spatial Regeneration Framework for the KQG, which covers more than 56 acres. Tony McDonough reports 

Knowledge Quarter
Mark Davies of K2 Architects, left, and Neil Lucas of GVA How Planning at the KQ Gateway

 

Three companies have been chosen to form a “super team” of planning experts to oversee the masterplan of Liverpool’s £2bn Knowledge Quarter Gateway.

After a tendering exercise the council has chosen the trio – GVA HOW Planning, K2 Architects and Planit-IE – to independently develop a Spatial Regeneration Framework (SRF) for the Knowledge Quarter Gateway (KQG) which covers more than 56 acres within the city centre.

They will be primarily tasked at looking at how best to redevelop the Lime Street area around the Adelphi Hotel, Central Station and Mount Pleasant and dovetailing the proposals from Liverpool John Moores University on its Copperas Hill site.

They will also look at plans for the Fabric District, Merseytravel’s plans for Central Station and various private sector schemes such as Circus Liverpool at the old Lewis’s building.

The team will also include a number of other supporting consultants including: Mott Macdonald (transport); GVA (property advisory services); Rob Burns (heritage); and Enfusion (strategic environmental assessment).

Central Station

Liverpool City Council, which recently acquired Central Station shopping centre and is overseeing public realm proposals for St George’s Plateau, 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.

The council, which is also currently developing the £1bn Paddington Village scheme in the heart of the development zone, has timetabled the submission of the final SRF report by spring 2019.

Once adopted as a Spatial Planning Document it will become part of the authority’s statutory process to inform all future planning applications in the area.

Economic future

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson, said: “The Knowledge Quarter Gateway is vital to this city’s economic future and such is the scale of its potential it will be a huge employer for generations to come.

This gateway project is now the final piece in the jigsaw to connect the site to the rest of the city centre and complete the wider regeneration of Lime Street, Mount Pleasant and Brownlow Hill. Its impact cannot be underestimated.”

Colin Sinclair
Colin Sinclair, chief executive of KQ Liverpool. Picture by Gareth Jones

 

The key planning issues within the KQ Gateway area are identified in the emerging Local Plan for Liverpool and include:

  • Increasing economic potential and attracting and retaining high growth businesses
  • Supporting and enhancing the retail function of the London Road Shopping Area
  • Supporting the regeneration of the London Road Area and Islington for uses that support KQ Liverpool and deliver Islington Regeneration Company’s vision for the area
  • The appropriateness of the area for purpose-built student accommodation
  • Improving public realm, connectivity and green infrastructure across the area
  • Bringing under-utilised and vacant land/buildings back into productive use

Colin Sinclair, chief executive of KQ Liverpool, added: “The phenomenal growth of KQ Liverpool, along with the ongoing regeneration of Lime Street, has shone the spotlight on KQ Gateway.

“It represents one of the greatest development opportunities in the UK and, alongside Paddington Village, will have a major impact on the city’s economy, creating thousands of jobs, in science, tech, health, education, retail and leisure.

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