Saltaire tax office redevelopment approved

CGI of Artisan’s plan

Urban regeneration specialist Artisan Real Estate can now move forward with its redevelopment of the 11-acre site, sandwiched between the River Aire and the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, on the edge of the Salts Mill world heritage site.

The HMRC offices opened in 1978 and closed in October 2021; Artisan submitted its planning application for the redevelopment a year later, in October 2022.

Artisan’s plans for the new Saltaire Riverside development include the provision of 289 new homes, more than 5,000 sq ft of commercial office space designed for flexible working and a café facing on to a new pocket park and piazza.

James Bulmer, development director for Leeds-based Artisan North, said: “We are naturally delighted that our transformational vision for this vacant site next to an UNESCO world heritage site is now set to become a reality. This is a hugely exciting development that will spectacularly open up a large riverside area that has effectively been closed to the public since the 1970s when the HMRC complex was built. Our proposals will bring interest and investment to the area and provide a natural, contemporary extension to the existing Saltaire footprint. Our completed development will become a modern interpretation of the neighbouring Saltaire village, bringing much needed sustainable family housing in an accessible, well connected and environmentally responsible setting.”

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How the site looks today [image from Google Earth]
How the site looks today [image from Google Earth]

He added: “Progressing such a large development on the very edge of a UNESCO World Heritage site brings its own set of challenges and responsibilities, and we have taken time to understand and reflect the unique historical contexts of the Salts Mill location. Our final proposal, developed in partnership with Yorkshire-based architects Axis Architecture, is the result of a more than 18-months of design and architectural planning. This has been supported by a comprehensive and broadly very positive public consultation programme – including two design workshops with local stakeholders and three major public events.”

Artisan’s scheme will demolish the existing seven-storey HMRC building, which consists of two large hexagonal office blocks, with a construction start on site forecast for early 2024. Artisan previously developed New Waverley in Edinburgh’s Old Town, the refurbishment of the old Everard’s Printworks in Bristol’s Old City and the transformation of Glasgow’s 19th century Custom House into a hotel quarter overlooking the River Clyde.

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