Starting on 12th February 2018, Danaher & Walsh, instructed by Morgan Sindall, are expected to begin works on the first phase of the road improvement works on Great Central Street so Morgan Sindall can carry out the overall development works at Great Central Square. Morgan Sindall has been contracted to complete these works by Charles Street Buildings Group and are responsible for delivering the entire scheme.
The development includes two new hotels and 35’000sqm of new, purpose-built office space in Leicester, they intend to remove the traffic from Great Central Street and refurbish Great Central Station; the area is going to be opened up as a public space which is going to really brighten up the area. By removing the traffic and regenerating the area, there’ll be greater connectivity between Great Central Square, Leicester City Centre and Leicester Waterside. Peter Soulsby, Leicester Mayor, says; “As part of my vision to connect Leicester’s city centre to its Waterside area, work is about to begin on the creation of a ‘super crossing’ across Vaughan Way,” and that it’s part of the Leicester City Mayor’s Connecting Leicester programme.
The site, which has been vacant for over forty years, will finally be brought back into economic use. The £50million private sector investment in the area will create new permanent jobs within the city centre, and “hundreds of construction jobs” according to the Leicester City Council. The highway works will cost £3million with Leicester City Council footing the bill for most of this cost (£2.4million). The highway works will take approximately forty weeks and should be completed in autumn 2018. Planning permission was only granted in October 2017 so progress is expected to be fast.
The highway works will allow pedestrian and cyclists safe access to the Waterside development and from the development into the city centre, pedestrians and cyclists will have access to new shops, housing and Friars Mill complex. It will be similar in scope and scale to the crossing we already have outside Leicester’s railway station, as mentioned in our previous article regarding the 73 new homes being built almost on the doorstep of this development, the intention is to extend the city centre outwards.
Traffic will no longer be able to access Great Central Street, much to the protest of the motorists who do use this street to cut through from Highcross Street to Vaughan Way. We’ve already seen major development in the area between Highcross Street and Sanvey Gate where cycle lanes and pavements were widened in favour of more pedestrian access. Of course, this reduces carbon emissions in the area and is fantastic for the overall atmosphere of Leicester City.
Leicester City Mayor Peter Soulsby said;
“The Charles Street Buildings scheme will deliver a significant investment and the redevelopment of an important city centre site, which has remained vacant for many years.”
Yesterday, Morgan Sindall and Leicester City Council were on hand in Highcross, Leicester where they’d opened an exhibition in the now vacant unit that used to be home to BB’s Brow Bar where they were on hand to provide more information about the project and to address any questions or concerns the general public may have.
Since work has begun, the council have installed a number of temporary lane and footpath closures to allow for preparation works to be carried out. Since early last year, signs have been in place warning drivers of the roadworks in Leicester set to take place over this year with the entire highway works taking place over thirty-five weeks in total and should be completed by November 2018.
The other parts of the redevelopments at Great Central Street and Vaughan Way, which won’t affect traffic and include the building of the new hotels, offices and public spaces, will continue for another 50 weeks afterwards, finishing in the late summer of 2019.
You can find out more about the project by clicking here or following this link: https://www.leicester.gov.uk/your-council/city-mayor-peter-soulsby/my-vision/connecting-leicester/vaughan-way-improvement-works/vaughan-way-improvement-works-faqs/