The official launch has been delayed by a week. Credit: via Blakeney Group


UNBEE-LIVEABLE… We are all well-versed in the joys of snagging here at Place North West, but one has to admit that the fiasco at Co-Op Live has taken it to another level. We can only imagine the glee the folks at AO Arena must have been feeling as they watched concert postponement after concert postponement. The Co-Op Live rival has even secured two of the venue’s acts – hosting Take That for five days starting on 7 May and rapper A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie on 4 May. Do we think this will all be forgotten in a few years? No doubt. But in the meantime, you can’t help but shake your head.

AFL Architects is leading on the design of a new KOP for Wrexham – one of a few projects the Wrexham AFC owners are working on. Credit: via planning documents

THE THICK BUTTRESS OF BUREAUCRACY… It seems barely a week goes by without some eye-catching announcement from Wrexham AFC and their Hollywood star co-owners Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney. But even the most polished of actors could not hide frustration at the good old planning process on this side of the pond while talking up future redevelopment of the club’s Racecourse Ground stadium, with potential long-term plans for it to have a 55,000-seat capacity.

Speaking on the entertainment website Collider’s podcast McElhenney said: “It’s a comedic point of consternation in the show (‘Welcome to Wrexham’), how often we’re running up against bureaucracy.

“Of course, safety concerns and all those regulations are in place for a reason but some things feel like hurdles for hurdles’ sake and it’s a lot harder to build in the UK than I’ve found almost anywhere in the world.”

Reynolds was more forthright, adding: “I think the thick buttress of bureaucracy is the biggest f****** problem.

“I live in New York, Rob lives in LA, where construction is very different in as much as they will charge you $10 for every $1 you spend. But in Wales, it really is a lot of red tape and it’s figuring out a way to tick a lot of those boxes to make sure every single bureaucrat is happy.”

Best of luck with your future planning apps, guys!

Everton FC fan plaza, P, Everton FC

A fan plaza is being created at Everton FC’s Bramley Dock Moore stadium. Credit: Everton FC

THE BLUES… While it’s always sunny in Wrexham these days, skies always seem to be grey for Everton FC at the moment. No sooner had the club avoided relegation after being beset by points deductions (which the club is appealing) for breaching Premier League financial rules, than the club allegedly started consulting insolvency advisors with uncertainty swirling around the 777 group’s takeover. The development of Everton’ Bramley Moore Dock stadium is beginning to seem like a real millstone around the club’s neck but at least fans will have an impressive 323,000 sq ft fan plaza to look forward to!

St Giles Parish Church in Wrexham c Leon S on Unsplash

The Local Development Plan for Wrexham has proved contentious. Credit: Leon S on Unsplash

SUPER ESTATE, SUPER HEADACHES… Heading back to Wrexham briefly, it seems not everyone is a fan of development. Plaid Cymru councillors there have organised a public meeting next week about plans for a 1,680-home ‘super estate’ off Cefn Road, along the city centre outskirts. Applications are already in from Barratt and Bloor Homes, and the Harworth Group, with the site included in the borough’s seemingly perennially contentious local development plan. It seems like the council still has some teething problems regarding its contentious, twice-refused, and now-accepted local development plan. While legal wrangles continue, and concerns about infrastructure, lack of GPs, and school places come from a good place, the facts remain that the local plan has actually been adopted. It seems the time for talking was years ago.

ICE Awards , ICE, c ER Photography

Winners from last night’s ICE North West Awards. Credit: ER Photography

AWARDS… A big congratulations to the winners of the Institution of Civil Engineers’ North West Awards last night. It was refreshing to see the built environment’s less sexy (but no less important) projects get their time in the spotlight. Based on the evening’s speeches from regional chair Nushma Juwaheer and president Anusha Shah, it is clear that the industry is committed to improving its diversity, collaborating more with other disciplines, and incorporating nature into its solutions. A solid mission and we look forward to seeing how it pans out.

Your Comments

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Is it confirmed that Everton are consulting insolvency advisors, or are you spreading rumours?

By Abots

    Hi Abots, we have included a link to one of many reports on the situation.

    By Rory Sheehan

Cant help feeling there is a culture of significant sneering about the new Everton stadium , not sure why is it because it will instantly become one of the top stadiums in Europe , media types cant do anything but produce negativity , perhaps its because their club has a rubbish stadium ? Lets celebrate a fantastic addition to the city and north west in general.

By Paul M - Woolton

Glad to see you’ve added the all important “allegedly”. Not sure the link is much of a reliable source however, more of a clickbait headline!

By Abots

Paul Woolton as a Man United supporter I can tell you I am jealous of the design and specification of the new Everton stadium, I wish Old Trafford was of a similar quality just with 30,000 more seats of course.

By Anonymous

The “thick buttress of bureaucracy”?
So Americans making bold promises about a major development meant to accommodate large crowds while not taking basic legal requirements and safeguards very seriously really is a cultural misunderstanding?
Perhaps local Licencing and Building Control authorities could get some easy to understand information leaflets printed and have them handed out to First and Business Class passengers on flights from Los Angeles to Manchester?

By Rotringer

The real fiasco is allowing the arena to be built in the first place, we clearly don’t care about carbon emissions

By Anonymous

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