Delays hit High Street’s £50m Cheshire Junction

Completion of the residential development in central Warrington has been pushed back several months to early next year as construction work pauses while the developer reviews its delivery programme.

Newcastle-based High Street Group is building the £48.7m Cheshire Junction, an eight-storey block planned to deliver 362 apartments on a former industrial site on John Street. The scheme also includes a car park with 796 spaces.

As of last November, main contractor Nobles Construction had completed the external frame and begun work erecting the external walls and creating the internal structure of the apartments, with fit-out to follow, according to a project update sent to investors at the time. The scheme was intended to complete by November 2021.

However, little work has progressed on site this year and High Street Group said in a statement this week that completion is now targeted for the first quarter of 2022.

A spokesperson for the company said: “We are currently reviewing elements of our construction programme with our contractor, which has reduced the level of activity on the site.

“However, we are confident that the project to create a new community in the heart of Warrington remains on schedule for completion in the first quarter of 2022.”

It is understood that the main cause of the delays on site is the Covid-19 pandemic – work was halted briefly early last year as the health crisis took hold, and Place North West understands that since the project update was emailed to investors last November, enforced isolations among construction workers, delays in delivery of building materials to the site, and other issues further stalled activity.

Warrington Council is understood to be monitoring the situation as part of its wider town centre regeneration plans. The site has a chequered history, with a previous scheme that would have housed 284 apartments stalling when its developer John S2 went into administration in 2008. The site lay vacant for a decade before High Street Group started on site with Cheshire Junction in 2019.

High Street Group has several other interests in the North West. They include an indirect investment in the £29m Middlewood Plaza private rented sector development in Greater Manchester; Anchorage 3 and 4 at Salford Quays, which the group intends to convert into a 130-apartment office-to-residential scheme, and a joint venture investment, through its subsidiary High Street Residential to deliver a £100m, 355-apartment scheme at Arundel Street in Castlefield, alongside Logik Developments.

Last year, administrators were investigating the cause of collapse of the High Street Group subsidiary that had initially invested in Middlewood Plaza.

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