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Developer Engages with Council Over Flats
- August 19, 2021

Brewster Bye Architects has submitted plans to Leeds City Council to redevelop a vacant site on Merrion Street in the city into 88 high-specification studio apartments with associated amenities for students, on behalf of developer Urban Developments (York) Ltd.

If the plans are approved, the vacant building at 26-34 Merrion Street would be demolished and a new building, part five, seven and nine storeys high, would be built in its place. Work would start in early 2022 with the scheme set for completion and occupancy in summer 2023.

Delivered under the ‘Engage’ brand, all 88 studios will be en suite. The building will also include a lounge, gym, study rooms and cinema room as well as laundry facilities for all the students. Four of the studios will be accessible and there will also be two larger, premium studios. The development will also include a staffed reception area and 23 cycle spaces.

Mark Henderson, from Brewster Bye Architects, said: “Since the initial planning application, this area of Leeds has benefited from significant investment and development and become a really attractive area for students.

“Last year the former Santander office building, which is adjacent to this site, was granted approval for conversion into a part four, ten and 32 storey development of over 500 apartments. Known as the Merrion Project, this scheme will provide an attractive focal point in a cluster of taller buildings in the area, and our design would sit well in this expertly and freshly designed part of Leeds.”

Located on the northern edge of Leeds City Centre’s main shopping and leisure quarters, Victoria Gate and Trinity shopping centres, as well as the city’s main university campuses and Leeds General Infirmary, all apartments are less than a ten-minute walk away.

Nick Gould from Urban Developments (York) Ltd commented: “The close proximity to both the universities and the city’s main shopping and leisure districts means that this area, in the heart of the acclaimed Arena Quarter, has become very popular for residential and student accommodation development. It’s now one of the city’s most vibrant areas, and has a mix of bars, cafes, restaurants and takeaways on the doorstep, as well as a host of retail and cultural offerings. The Leeds Arena and the investment in the Merrion Centre makes it a popular destination for leisure and entertainment that is ideal for students.

“We believe that this exclusive development will be a great place for people to live and enjoy the very best of Leeds, whilst benefiting from first-class higher education.”

The submission follows extensive engagement with planning officers. The site had previously been granted planning permission for a mixed-use scheme, four years ago.

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