Tuesday, November 12, 2019

News: Forge Island contracts exchanged


The regeneration of Rotherham's Forge Island has moved a step closer recently, as urban regeneration specialist, Muse Developments, has exchanged contracts with Rotherham Council regarding the landmark mixed-use destination.

Rothbiz reported first that an "agreement for lease (AFL)" was signed by Muse and the Council in June allowing the preferred developer to progress with detailed design, obtaining planning permission and securing end users.

The two parties have exchanged contracts on an agreement to deliver the scheme which includes a cinema, food and drink outlets, a hotel, and a car park, with the new leisure facilities set within an attractive public space and a new pedestrian bridge connecting to the wider town centre.


Dan Needham, development director at Muse Developments, said: "We're excited to reach the next stage in our partnership with the Council, as we work collaboratively to deliver what will truly be a transformational scheme in the heart of Rotherham town centre.

"Bringing forward any successful programme of regeneration is built on strong, open partnerships, with a clear vision on community need and focus on delivery. This is an exciting proposal and we look forward to working with the council to bring this vibrant, new leisure quarter to the community."

A planning application is currently being prepared, with a view to being submitted in the coming months. Following consent and exchange of agreements with the main anchor occupiers, it is anticipated that construction will begin in late 2020.

A 250 year lease with Muse has been proposed and earlier estimates were that the first phase would cost £35m at current prices.

The agreement including an option for the developer to ask the Council to take an over-riding lease of the scheme. Reducing some of the risks for the developer, this would involve the authority subletting and collecting rents from operators, which would generate an income stream to fund the head lease costs.

Work is underway on the key the flood defence and enabling works around the site which has been affected by the recent heavy rainfall. Forge Island car park is closed until further notice due to flood damage.

Work includes new 3.75 metre high retaining walls, an eight metre guillotine canal gate to the southern end of the site, terrace seating and high-quality public spaces.

Developers have been working on a scheme for Forge Island with undercroft parking that is designed to flood. The developments above will be raised by around three metres which means that a new footbridge from Minster Gardens and a cleared Riverside precinct site would actually go slightly up towards Forge Island.

Forge Island website

Images: Muse / RMBC


Anonymous,  November 12, 2019 at 12:42 PM  

Construction now expected in late 2020 ? The last I read was it was to open in early 2021! Every announcement the timescale gets pushed back, anywhere else it would be up & running by now!

Bunnyman November 12, 2019 at 2:21 PM  

Part of the deal is to demolish the 2 buildings on corporation street first. When that happens then and only then we will no it’s happening. Till then it’s a council dream.

Anonymous,  November 15, 2019 at 2:02 AM  

Flood defence work, which as to happen before any construction takes place, is already under way,, so project is already happening.

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