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Hanley to get a new Business Quarter




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Business District takes a step closer as planning application submitted

Plans for a new city centre business district have been submitted to Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

Genr8 Developments, a London Company and the city council’s development partner behind the new mixed use regeneration project in Stoke-on-Trent, has submitted an outline planning application for the initial 50,000 sqm of development.

The scheme, although office led, will create a thriving mixed use business quarter in the city centre with a variety of office, retail, leisure and public space.

The application, which provides outline details for the first phases of the scheme, follows a consultation event in November where residents were given the chance to see initial design proposals.

Mike Smith, of Genr8, said the planning application is a significant step forward in the delivery of a much needed new business quarter for the city centre.

He said:

The Central Business District will create a vibrant quarter in the heart of the city centre where offices, retail and leisure sit side by side. The planning application is a significant step in the delivery of the scheme and outlines a business district which offers a thriving day and night time economy with complementing businesses, shops, bars, restaurants and public open spaces of the highest quality. We believe that it will be the catalyst for further regeneration throughout the city centre.

The business district, which is expected to eventually include up to 100,000sqm of business space in the city centre, will be delivered in phases over the next 10 to 15 years. Phase 1 is expected to focus on up to 10,000sqm of development space. The site lies behind the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery and near to the new Tesco store off Broad Street and the regional shopping centre being developed at the former East West site.

Councillor Mervin Smith, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for city development (regeneration), said:

The Business District is designed to complement other regeneration schemes across the city. In the heart of the city centre it will offer a mixture of business and will complement retail and leisure facilities. The new Tesco store is nearby with the refurbished Mitchell Memorial Theatre due to open next year and work starting on the first phase of the East West redevelopment - the bus station - starting on site in March.

A decision on the outline planning application is due early next year. Detailed designs are then due to be submitted later in the year as part of a detailed planning application. Further consultation events to review plans for the scheme will be arranged appropriately.

Elsewhere on the other side of the city, the 35,564sqm G.Park Blue Planet warehouse built in and completed at the end of 2008 and has stood empty ever since has still yet to have any tenants.

Could the business park succeed where Blue Planet fails? Will parking be taken into account? Or will workers face high monthly parking costs? Will the plan include a decent public transport plan or will the extra volume of workers grind the already lethargic Potteries road system to a halt?

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janet-k's picture

I hate to say this, but it's

I hate to say this, but it's taken I don't know how long to agree on a developer, and now they've submitted an "outline plan" which will be decided on by our council "early" next year - doesn't that give them until about June to make a decision as to whether they like it? Then, if they agree the outline plan, a more detailed plan needs to be submitted, and agreed. It's no surprise it's going to take between 10 and 15 years to complete it.

I don't know who's made the comments in the last paragraph, but I have to admit, I did give a wry smile on reading them. I guess that hopefully, in 15 years time, when the Business District is completed, we may be in a better financial situation in this country than we are now.

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