Director of City Centre Development
Heart of the City II is a £470m, 1.5m sq ft multipurpose scheme designed to make an impact.
There is a strong theme of inventive repurposing that is coursing through Sheffield currently and a restless energy to transform the city centre. This project, combining private and public funding backed by the Council, delivered by Strategic Development Partner, Queensberry, will create an integrated destination that will become the new focal point of Sheffield’s retail, leisure and commercial offer.
The scheme builds on the key achievements and example set by Heart of the City and The Moor regeneration – alongside Kelham Island, the University campus masterplans, Sheffield Station and Park Hill – to not just change one part of the city, but string significant parts of it back together again.
It will make Sheffield an even more exciting and interesting place to live and work. It will comprise premium shops, contemporary workspaces, lifestyle hotels, urban homes, restaurants, bars and cafés, competitive socialising venues, parking and quality new public spaces.
Working with the traditional street layout, modern and existing architecture is being combined to provide a sophisticated place to live, work, shop and visit. It brings together the old and the new, maintaining the existing street patterns and several key heritage elements, whilst adding striking new architecture and distinctive outdoor squares and spaces.
The long-term project is systematically regenerating (as opposed to tearing down and building anew) and reinvigorating the geographical centre of one of the country's largest cities.
In addition to encouraging new retailers to the city centre, the scheme will provide Grade A office space, 4-star hotels, a range of homes for long-term residents, restaurants and cafés, leisure destinations, parking and quality public realm – creating an exciting central quarter that helps attract new jobs and investment.
Although retail remains a key arm of the scheme and has an important role to play in the future of the city centre, the scheme has been designed to respond to the uncertainty in the retail market, and, with help from the Academy of Urbanism, has sought to redefine how a modern urban centre should provide at different levels for the needs of businesses, residents and visitors moving forward.
Innovation in leisure, education and housing have all been factored in.
A key turning point has been the decision to retain Cambridge Street (formerly Coal Pit Lane), one of Sheffield’s oldest streets, along with some of its key historic buildings. This includes Leah’s Yard, a complex of former metalworking shops, which is being reimagined for today’s makers and creators.