After agreeing to purchase the council-owned land in Dingle in October, the developer is to submit plans for a £55m, housing-led development next month.
Place North West revealed earlier this year the developer was looking to conclude a deal with Liverpool City Council to buy the vacant site, and with the land purchase now agreed, Elliot has pressed on with mixed-use proposals for the plot.
The proposals around St James Church will see two brownfield sites neighbouring the city’s Baltic Triangle comprehensively overhauled.
The existing grassed-over ‘Flat Iron’ site will include a new public park and children’s play area, with 220 apartments and townhouses proposed in two blocks behind the Cains Brewery on Upper Stanhope Street. Around 10,000 sq ft of workspace targeted at tech and digital occupiers will also be delivered here.
An industrial estate facing Head Street is also to be demolished and replaced with a mix of 130 townhouses and apartments under the plans, which have been drawn up by architect Falconer Chester Hall.
The developer said only 6% of the existing site’s green space will be lost under the proposals, with the existing pocket park on Gore Street to be refurbished and redesigned, while the “overwhelming majority” of mature trees are to be retained.
Subject to planning permission, the developer is targeting a spring 2020 start for the project.
The expected submission of a planning application next month follows extensive consultation with the council and the local community, which has seen the plans rejigged to reflect feedback.
Earlier plans had including a fourth block of apartments on the site’s southern boundary and taller buildings on Head Street, but the additional block was removed while the Head Street buildings have been reduced in height after taking on board community views.
Alastair Shepherd of Falconer Chester Hall said: “People told us that fly tipping and anti-social behaviour were a real issue. The green spaces in their current form aren’t safe or an enjoyable place to spend time, so a combination of enhanced management and the benefits of passive surveillance from new residents will help deal with that. The community also made practical suggestions to help maintain key views and reduce massing, which we have been able to take on board.”
Elliot Lawless of Elliot Group said: “We’ve had to put our thinking caps on here to deliver a scheme that is right for the neighbourhood. The local community and Cllr Steve Munby have been extremely helpful in guiding us towards an appropriate solution and I’m delighted that we can offer such a comprehensive package with green space at the heart of the masterplan.
“In the three consultation events and a walk-around local people were clear about the type and scale of housing they wanted so we’ve reduced the quantity of homes by 25% and upped our investment in open space.”
The St James Place development has a long history, with a regeneration project launched in 2012 by the council, the Diocese of Liverpool, and the Berkeley Foundation.
This was to include the renovation of the grade two-listed St James Church; residential development on sites one and two; community facilities on the stopped-up Chesterfield Street; redevelopment of the industrial units on site three; and creating a national memorial and visitors’ centre for the victims of the slave trade.
However, work stalled on this redevelopment after it was found the memorial elements of the scheme would cost up to £20m. A registered provider had also been involved in the deal but subsequently withdrew, while the Diocese has also scrapped its plans to restore the church.
The slavery memorial is still being progressed, and the city council intends to ring-fence the receipts from the land sale of St James Place to contribute towards any future memorial project.