Start is in sight for St Botolph's Quarter, developer pledges

Essex County Standard: Start is in sight for St Botolph's Quarter, developer pledges Start is in sight for St Botolph's Quarter, developer pledges

THE long wait for the regeneration of Colchester’s St Botolph’s Quarter will soon come to an end, a developer has pledged.

Over the last nine years, Colchester Council has spent millions buying land and hiring consultants to draw up plans in so far failed attempts to redevelop land off Queen Street.

This week, following a series of setbacks, the authority announced it had selected Norwich-based Building Partnerships to transform land including the former bus station, First’s bus depot and St James House.

Chairman Paul Knowles said his firm’s plans for a hotel, restaurants, cafes and 50 homes, combined with Firstsite and the forthcoming Curzon cinema planned for the former Keddies building, will be worth the wait.

See Wednesday's Gazette for the full story

Comments (12)

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2:14pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Hamiltonandy says...

As the Gazette paper edition states the proposed developer has not got the finances arranged for the latest council fantasy. So much for the "creative quarter".
As the Gazette paper edition states the proposed developer has not got the finances arranged for the latest council fantasy. So much for the "creative quarter". Hamiltonandy
  • Score: -1

2:39pm Wed 26 Feb 14

catflap1 says...

that should read
....This week, following a series of setbacks, mainly involving the borough council....
that should read ....This week, following a series of setbacks, mainly involving the borough council.... catflap1
  • Score: 3

3:09pm Wed 26 Feb 14

lm1234 says...

Well hopefully if there's a new cinema it will give some kind of competition to the Odeon. Can we not follow Clacton's route and have a budget cinema? They only £2-3 on new releases whereas we're paying far more.. I pay teen prices and even that's almost £8.
Well hopefully if there's a new cinema it will give some kind of competition to the Odeon. Can we not follow Clacton's route and have a budget cinema? They only £2-3 on new releases whereas we're paying far more.. I pay teen prices and even that's almost £8. lm1234
  • Score: 2

4:07pm Wed 26 Feb 14

angryman!!! says...

Any timings for planning to go in, expected start date or finish date. Agree also a budget cinema outside of town would be good to give competition
Any timings for planning to go in, expected start date or finish date. Agree also a budget cinema outside of town would be good to give competition angryman!!!
  • Score: 3

6:59pm Wed 26 Feb 14

colcestrian says...

According to todays paper the first work will start next year with the opening of 5 or 6 restaurants / cafes. Erm do we not have enough places serving food already ? Especially in this area of town, it is after all nicknamed Kebab alley !
According to todays paper the first work will start next year with the opening of 5 or 6 restaurants / cafes. Erm do we not have enough places serving food already ? Especially in this area of town, it is after all nicknamed Kebab alley ! colcestrian
  • Score: 1

2:15am Thu 27 Feb 14

Boris says...

Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not.
Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not. Boris
  • Score: 5

8:49am Thu 27 Feb 14

hughie-s says...

Boris wrote:
Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not.
The development would appear to be on the bus garage site and to the rear of the Keddies building. The ECC land is being used for a public open space according to the original dream
http://www.colcheste
r.gov.uk/CHttpHandle
r.ashx?id=1790&p=0
which states:

"4.1 Queen Street / Berryfield
Cultural Quarter
Removal of the Bus Station in the Berryfield
area provides the opportunity to create a
different, visitor-based mix of uses.
Concentration of various visitor attractions
and historic buildings within and around
this site, the proximity to the existing
Minories Gallery, the potential to provide a
location for the new Visual Arts Facility
(VAF) and the somewhat calmer nature of
this area at the eastern edge of the Town
Centre reinforce the idea of creating a new
Cultural Quarter.
The new development is strongly
associated with the Visual Arts Facility
project, which is seen as the most
important new building to be built in
Colchester for many years. The location
and layout of the building is the result of a
high-profile architectural competition. The
building conforms to the existing
geometrical patterns to the north of the
Berryfield site, overlooking a new park. This
new open space transforms a hidden and
inaccessible site in Colchester into an
attractive and useful urban space sensitive
to the valuable and delicate archaeological
resource underneath it.
[quote][p][bold]Boris[/bold] wrote: Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not.[/p][/quote]The development would appear to be on the bus garage site and to the rear of the Keddies building. The ECC land is being used for a public open space according to the original dream http://www.colcheste r.gov.uk/CHttpHandle r.ashx?id=1790&p=0 which states: "4.1 Queen Street / Berryfield Cultural Quarter Removal of the Bus Station in the Berryfield area provides the opportunity to create a different, visitor-based mix of uses. Concentration of various visitor attractions and historic buildings within and around this site, the proximity to the existing Minories Gallery, the potential to provide a location for the new Visual Arts Facility (VAF) and the somewhat calmer nature of this area at the eastern edge of the Town Centre reinforce the idea of creating a new Cultural Quarter. The new development is strongly associated with the Visual Arts Facility project, which is seen as the most important new building to be built in Colchester for many years. The location and layout of the building is the result of a high-profile architectural competition. The building conforms to the existing geometrical patterns to the north of the Berryfield site, overlooking a new park. This new open space transforms a hidden and inaccessible site in Colchester into an attractive and useful urban space sensitive to the valuable and delicate archaeological resource underneath it. hughie-s
  • Score: 1

1:41pm Thu 27 Feb 14

julieee says...

is it just me who thinks that it's about time this particular photo didn't have any buses showing on it?
is it just me who thinks that it's about time this particular photo didn't have any buses showing on it? julieee
  • Score: 0

4:17pm Thu 27 Feb 14

romantic says...

Hughie, that is a document which I thought had been airbrushed from history, so well done on finding it! As a "vision", it is very appealing. The soft pencil drawings of Queen Street make it seem almost Parisian. 15 Queen Street has been knocked down, giving good views back across the town, and there is a heritage trail parallel to Queen St. Priory St car park has gone, and is a green space next to the wall, with steps through the wall re-opened.

page 19 alone needs to be highlighted, because it shows that other places can get things done. A cycle friendly street, a nice big bus interchange, and two different park and rides!. Chorley, Ipswich, Norwich and Eccles have got things built. So maybe this time it will happen. We have the VAF (page 21: "completion in August 2007"), no question, so let's hope this new start goes to plan.

Sadly, Space Syntax (master planning consultants) have lots of space on their website for projects in Jeddah, but Colchester gets only a 3-line mention of assistance with design of the VAF. Which is a shame, because somebody has clearly given it a lot of thought.

Seriously, the master plan looks great, and it could still happen. Probably, what we need is a benign dictator who says "just do it" rather than the current ineptitocracy that run the town. That is what worries me: it is that, because they are inept, they are drawn to others like themselves. Let's hope Building Partnerships can prove me wrong and get this thing rolling along, but with CBC involved, sadly I fear it will not be as simple as that!
Hughie, that is a document which I thought had been airbrushed from history, so well done on finding it! As a "vision", it is very appealing. The soft pencil drawings of Queen Street make it seem almost Parisian. 15 Queen Street has been knocked down, giving good views back across the town, and there is a heritage trail parallel to Queen St. Priory St car park has gone, and is a green space next to the wall, with steps through the wall re-opened. page 19 alone needs to be highlighted, because it shows that other places can get things done. A cycle friendly street, a nice big bus interchange, and two different park and rides!. Chorley, Ipswich, Norwich and Eccles have got things built. So maybe this time it will happen. We have the VAF (page 21: "completion in August 2007"), no question, so let's hope this new start goes to plan. Sadly, Space Syntax (master planning consultants) have lots of space on their website for projects in Jeddah, but Colchester gets only a 3-line mention of assistance with design of the VAF. Which is a shame, because somebody has clearly given it a lot of thought. Seriously, the master plan looks great, and it could still happen. Probably, what we need is a benign dictator who says "just do it" rather than the current ineptitocracy that run the town. That is what worries me: it is that, because they are inept, they are drawn to others like themselves. Let's hope Building Partnerships can prove me wrong and get this thing rolling along, but with CBC involved, sadly I fear it will not be as simple as that! romantic
  • Score: 3

6:56pm Thu 27 Feb 14

hughie-s says...

Three more links to the original scheme

http://www.trevorhor
ne.com/projects/urba
n-design/colchester-
cultural-quarter

http://www.flacq.com
/work/masterplanning
/st_botolphs

http://www.ch-archit
ects.com/projects/co
mpetitions/st-botolp
h-s-cultural-quarter
/
Three more links to the original scheme http://www.trevorhor ne.com/projects/urba n-design/colchester- cultural-quarter http://www.flacq.com /work/masterplanning /st_botolphs http://www.ch-archit ects.com/projects/co mpetitions/st-botolp h-s-cultural-quarter / hughie-s
  • Score: 1

8:37pm Thu 27 Feb 14

stevedawson says...

Lets hope it all comes about.l think the most we will see however is more cafes.
Lets hope it all comes about.l think the most we will see however is more cafes. stevedawson
  • Score: 1

12:11am Fri 28 Feb 14

Assimilation says...

hughie-s wrote:
Boris wrote:
Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not.
The development would appear to be on the bus garage site and to the rear of the Keddies building. The ECC land is being used for a public open space according to the original dream
http://www.colcheste

r.gov.uk/CHttpHandle

r.ashx?id=1790&p
=0
which states:

"4.1 Queen Street / Berryfield
Cultural Quarter
Removal of the Bus Station in the Berryfield
area provides the opportunity to create a
different, visitor-based mix of uses.
Concentration of various visitor attractions
and historic buildings within and around
this site, the proximity to the existing
Minories Gallery, the potential to provide a
location for the new Visual Arts Facility
(VAF) and the somewhat calmer nature of
this area at the eastern edge of the Town
Centre reinforce the idea of creating a new
Cultural Quarter.
The new development is strongly
associated with the Visual Arts Facility
project, which is seen as the most
important new building to be built in
Colchester for many years. The location
and layout of the building is the result of a
high-profile architectural competition. The
building conforms to the existing
geometrical patterns to the north of the
Berryfield site, overlooking a new park. This
new open space transforms a hidden and
inaccessible site in Colchester into an
attractive and useful urban space sensitive
to the valuable and delicate archaeological
resource underneath it.
And you forgot "All the blocks of flats" How Cultural is that?
[quote][p][bold]hughie-s[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Boris[/bold] wrote: Commercial development of the former bus station land will contravene the terms under which CBC acquired the land from ECC in 1960. If not required for the bus station, the land was supposed to be devoted to community use. The VAF (however little it is used) counts as a community facility. Restaurants, flats etc do not.[/p][/quote]The development would appear to be on the bus garage site and to the rear of the Keddies building. The ECC land is being used for a public open space according to the original dream http://www.colcheste r.gov.uk/CHttpHandle r.ashx?id=1790&p =0 which states: "4.1 Queen Street / Berryfield Cultural Quarter Removal of the Bus Station in the Berryfield area provides the opportunity to create a different, visitor-based mix of uses. Concentration of various visitor attractions and historic buildings within and around this site, the proximity to the existing Minories Gallery, the potential to provide a location for the new Visual Arts Facility (VAF) and the somewhat calmer nature of this area at the eastern edge of the Town Centre reinforce the idea of creating a new Cultural Quarter. The new development is strongly associated with the Visual Arts Facility project, which is seen as the most important new building to be built in Colchester for many years. The location and layout of the building is the result of a high-profile architectural competition. The building conforms to the existing geometrical patterns to the north of the Berryfield site, overlooking a new park. This new open space transforms a hidden and inaccessible site in Colchester into an attractive and useful urban space sensitive to the valuable and delicate archaeological resource underneath it.[/p][/quote]And you forgot "All the blocks of flats" How Cultural is that? Assimilation
  • Score: 0

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