Investec Bank and Vinci are resurrecting plans to build apartments in Queens Dock, Liverpool, after earlier attempts stalled during the downturn.
Pending approval by the planning authority at a meeting next Tuesday 10 January the bank will instruct Vinci to build two towers, one of 15 storeys and another of 13 storeys. The brick towers will contain 189 flats above three duplex apartments in a three-storey block linking the two towers. The site is bounded by Dolby Hotel, Queens Dock, Sefton Street and 112 Mariners Wharf.
Previous planning consents were granted in 2006 and 2009 for a single tower of 22 storeys but were not implemented. The 2006 consent was gained by the Taittinger family, which developed the nearby Leo Casino in the early 2000s. The site was later sold on to Roddington Investments before Investec took control. As the mortgage provider, Investec, said it will now develop the revised scheme itself after Roddington exited.
The section 106 planning agreement has yet to be signed and requires a £270,000 payment for public realm and contribution towards tree planting.
Objections have been made by eight local residents in Mariners Wharf and the Anchorage claiming the proposals would cause over-supply of housing in the area, increased traffic congestion and are of a poor architectural standard. The neighbouring Dolby Hotel also objected on grounds of harm to road access and questioned whether the buildings would be in keeping with the area.
The site is within the so-called buffer zone of Liverpool's World Heritage Site as a mercantile maritime city of historic significance. Watchdog English Heritage appeared to be broadly supportive of the plans, stating that views of the Grade 1-listed Anglican Cathedral would not be harmed, but did write in its letter to planners that "further analysis is required to address the impact on views within the World Heritage Site itself".
Planning officers have recommended the application for approval subject to legal agreement over the section 106 conditions.