Boxing champion takes on Kirkdale regeneration
Liverpool Foundation Homes is partnerimg with former boxer Paul Smith to deliver a housing-led project in Kirkdale, alongside community facilities, elderly care accommodation and a boxing academy.
The academy would be run by Smith and his three brothers, who all hold boxing championship titles.
Smith would be a co-investor in the scheme, known as Kirkdale Canalside, and is being represented by London-based Lacey Capital Partners.
The proposed site is a derelict railway cutting and neighbouring canalside which run along Melrose Road and Commercial Road through the centre of Kirkdale. The two plots total more than 17 acres.
There are no details yet as to the number of homes proposed as the scheme is still in the consultation phase, with two events due to take place next week. Alongside the community facilities, there is also an eco-park proposed.
Smith said: “We’re at an early stage but wanted to share our initial thinking with the people of Kirkdale so that they can help shape our ideas.
“The project would act as a catalyst for wider regeneration and provide much-needed high quality housing at rates affordable to local people. The area has been crying out for new community facilities and these will go beyond boxing in to areas such as fitness, diet, nutrition and wider life skills.”
Liverpool City Council is the sole shareholder of Foundations, which has been set up as an ethical housing company.
Foundations chief executive Mark Kitts said: “Our ideas incorporate some great initial thinking about how to bring these neglected and underused sites back in to community use and we see them as having the potential to kick-start regeneration in neighbouring areas such as the Flower Streets.”
Two public consultation events will be held at the Gordon Institute on Stanley Road on Friday 17 May at 10am-2pm and 4pm-6.30pm, and Saturday 18 May from 10am-4pm.