PLANNING | Liverpool go-ahead for JSM hotel
A pair of industrial schemes in Speke have been greenlit by the city council, along with the redevelopment of a former Natwest bank into a 92-bedroom hotel.
Pharmaron, Estuary Business Park
The Chinese pharmaceutical firm, working with advisor WHP, has secured approval for the first phase of redevelopment of a 10-acre site at Estuary Business Park, comprising a three-storey production facility.
Beijing-headquartered Pharmaron Biologics operates from an existing facility on two Estuary sites it acquired from the previous occupier Allergan – part of US-based AbbVie – last March for $118.7m.
The building Pharmaron currently occupies with around 150 staff is called The Hub and sits on one side of Estuary Banks Road. This sits opposite a second building known as the NBC, which has 10 acres of undeveloped land to the south. Pharmaron wants to develop this plot in three phases totalling around 400,000 sq ft to expand its operations.
Under the first phase, the company would build a 213,000 sq ft production facility with offices, laboratories, and warehousing over three floors, plus associated car parking. Future phases could see a 350-400 space multistorey car park and a commercial warehouse and additional offices to consolidate operations from the Hub building onto a single site.
The first-phase application includes 20 electric vehicle charging points.
Land east of Boulevard Retail Park
Developer: TJ Morris and Davis Property Developments
In a further Speke scheme retailer T J Morris, which trades as Home Bargains, has the all-clear to build a 100,000 sq ft warehouse on land east of Boulevard Retail Park, a site that houses a flagship store for the group.
The building is proposed for a vacant five-acre site on the northern side of Speke Boulevard.
The site used to be occupied by housewares company Rayware, now based on Triumph Trading Park. B&M Retail was an objector to the scheme, with GL Hearn engaged by the applicant to rebuff the rival’s claims.
Under the plans, T J Morris’ business unit would comprise an 88,000 sq ft warehouse, 11,000 sq ft of offices over two floors, car parking, a services yard, and external works and landscaping.
Castle Street hotel
Architect and planner: Wroot Design
The way is now clear for the former NatWest building at 20-34 Castle Street to be converted into a 92-room hotel with a double-storey roof extension.
Developer JSM Company Group, headed up by Jamie Motlagh, aims to bring back into use the vacant grade two-listed Liverpool city centre property, which NatWest vacated in 2017 when it relocated to a new branch on Church Street.
JSM bought the site in January 2021.
Under the plans, vacant office space across part of the ground floor and all of the upper floors and basement of 20-26 Castle Street, together with the upper floors of 32-24 Castle Street, would be converted into a 33,000 sq ft hotel with 92 bedrooms.
The hotel would be accessed from Castle Street through the building’s main entrance or a new entrance door within 20-26 Castle Street, according to the plans. The two-storey rooftop addition is expected to house nine of the hotel rooms.
Planning references for the projects are 22F/0849 for TJ Morris and 22F/1314 for Pharmaron, while the hotel project’s main reference is 21F/2507 and its listed building reference 21L/3643.