How the new Lime Street scheme would look

Member Article

New scheme to freshen up Liverpool’s Lime Street

Fresh plans to breathe new life into a key area in the centre of Liverpool have been announced by the city council working in partnership with regeneration specialists Neptune Developments..

The revised plan for the East side of Lime Street has been revealed following consultation on an earlier scheme in April this year.

The redesign addresses many of the concerns and suggestions aired during the consultation period.

Steve Parry, Managing Director of Neptune Developments explained: “The consultation has been very helpful. It has given us a chance to re-think the project in a wider context that looks at Lime Street’s history and its future within a rapidly changing and dynamic city centre.

“The new design is more urban, more visually dramatic and more integrated. It’s very much part of an emerging vision for the whole of Lime Street and its surrounding area.”

The new scheme re-introduces the existing block pattern of the Eastside of Lime Street with metal panels, designed give distinctive personality to each block, which can be dramatically back-lit at night.

In addition to the redesigned buildings, incorporating hotel, shops, restaurants and student accommodation, the scheme canvasses longer term ideas for Lime Street including the potential partial pedestrianisation of the area between the Crown and Vine pubs.

The facade of the Futurist cinema will not be saved under the new scheme because of its “poor structural condition”.

Another key element of the vision is a proposal to create a new entertainment and media hub in the restored ABC cinema. The listed Art Deco building has been vacant for nearly two decades but is set to become both a major live music venue and a studio for the production and broadcast of international television programmes. Under the new scheme, the complex will house, TV production facilities, three restaurants, a coffee shop and basement cocktail bar as well as a performance auditorium and two television studios.

According to the city council, one of the core ideas underpinning the business plan for the venue is a new live television broadcast featuring a music and chat show from Liverpool with a transatlantic link-up to New York.

The idea has been proposed by Liverpool music entrepreneur Mark Cowley.

He explained: “We have been working for over a year on the project and have already had massive interest and support from leading media companies, collaborators and promoters. This is a fantastic building and has all the versatility and space we need, for what will be a unique media and performance destination.”

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “Lime Street is one of the major gateways into and out of the city and has been neglected for far too long. It is crucial that any scheme is ambitious and creates the best possible first impression of the city.

“I am pleased that the architects have listened to the feedback from the consultation and created something that I believe will make this part of Liverpool vibrant and exciting.”

The revised plans for the Eastside of Lime Street will now go forward for consideration by Liverpool City Council’s Planning Committee before the end of July, with further public consultation taking place until the 23rd of July.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Simon Malia .

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