Community interest company Baltic Creative has announced a 10-year deal with the owner of Cains Brewery Village in Liverpool, to convert 45,000 sq ft of disused warehouses into space for artists and creative industries.
Baltic Creative currently occupies a complex of units on Jamaica Street. The next phase, called Northern Lights, will include affordable artist studios, gallery spaces, workshop units and log-burning mezzanine studios. The workspace will have a central café and event facilities.
The Royal Standard art gallery, which is based on Vauxhall Road, will relocate as one of the main anchor tenants within the development. Commercial printer GoCre8 will also take space.
Mark Lawler, managing director of Baltic Creative CIC, said: “Baltic Creative CIC is committed to providing artist-led space and supporting the growth of this well established community in Liverpool. Working closely with our two fantastic anchor tenants we will create a space we can be proud of and perhaps more importantly, a space we currently don’t have available in the Baltic Triangle. It’s an exciting time for the Baltic area as it continues to grow and emerge as a great place for Creative and Digital industry businesses. Northern Lights will add further to the fantastic momentum for change that the area is currently undergoing.”
Planning permission was granted in 2013 for the conversion and extension of the grade two-listed brewery building for a range of uses, including a new craft brewery and museum, a boutique hotel with 94 bedrooms and an art-house cinema.
Outline permission was also granted for 725 new homes, a 41,900 sq ft foodstore and 36,300 sq ft of flexible commercial accommodation.
Bilfinger GVA and Colliers International have been in the market for the past two years seeking a development partner for the £150m project.
Sudarghara Dusanj, managing director of Cains Brewery Village, said: “Cains Brewery Village has been granted planning permission for a one million sq.ft residential led mixed-use development. Northern Lights is the first step in our aim to create a vibrant urban village which will underpin the regeneration of the Baltic Triangle into an area thriving with creative and independent minded companies and individuals. We do, however, realise this ambition will take some time to deliver and feel that Northern Lights can, in the next 10 years, help us to achieve our overall aims and objectives for the site, whilst providing, in a climate of rising values, much needed affordable creative and artistic led space here in the Baltic Triangle.”
Baltic Creative CIC has secured £310,000 of funding from Liverpool City Region Impact Fund, which is part-financed by the Social Investment Business and the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007-13, in order to deliver the refurbishment.
Works for the first phase of the Northern Light scheme are expected to start this month, and are due to complete in October.