Downing has submitted a planning application for a mixed use scheme to create student accommodation and a multi-purpose events venue in Leeds.
The proposed development would transform two plots of land adjacent to the Leeds First Direct Arena in the city centre, including the site of the soon to be vacated Yorkshire Bank HQ.
The submission includes a detailed planning application for two purpose-built student accommodation tower blocks on Merrion Way and Clay Pit Lane. It also seeks outline consent for construction of an events venue. Downing does not intended to build the events venue itself – it would be taken forward by the city council at a later date if it goes ahead, Downing said.
The proposed student accommodation scheme comprises 1,200 bedrooms across two of buildings of 38 and 17-storeys respectively, including a mixture of cluster flats with shared living/dining spaces and individual studio units.
The proposed development of the events space will offer 2,000 sqm of flat floor space for exhibitions, banqueting and entertainment events, plus 1,700 square metres of breakout and seminar space, and a 900 seat auditorium for conferences.
Downing projects director George Tyson said: “Leeds has one of the largest student populations in the UK, with growing demand for purpose-built accommodation. Our proposals will add high quality new living spaces in the heart of the city, close to its esteemed academic institutions.
“Having delivered numerous successful schemes in Leeds, we are excited to have worked closely with the City Council to bring forward plans for a multi-purpose venue which would enrich the city's events capacity, bringing its offer in-line with other core UK cities.
“Each element of the plan promises to regenerate unused space in part of the city that will benefit economically from additional footfall and provide new opportunities for the local supply-chain.”