Step closer for Lancaster riverside regeneration

Plans for the redevelopment of a derelict, contaminated site in Lancaster have moved forward after a lead developer has been formally appointed.

CTP Ltd and Development Securities PLC are to act as joint lead developers of the site and will clean up and co-ordinate the redevelopment due to start in 2006.

The site itself, Luneside East, is a 6.5 hectare site on Lancaster’s historic River Lune waterfront and is the City Council’s main regeneration priority. Its previous uses have left it grossly contaminated and it also contains an operational gasholder and lies within a flood risk area.

The Council has secured funding from English Partnerships, the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and the European Regional Development Fund to acquire the site, move the gas-holder and secure flood protection.

Energy transmission utility National Grid will decommission and demolish the gas-holder and provide new pipelines and replacement storage engineering. National Grid has also agreed to sell its land holdings on the site to the Council to make way for the development.

The holder was built in 1890, is 92 feet high and currently is used for storage of up to 28,000 cubic feet of gas.

Councillor Abbot Bryning, chair of the Luneside East Advisory Board said the regeneration would make a real difference.

“The aim is to transform it into an imaginative mixed development of an urban village with modern commercial facilities, a park and open spaces with an attractive waterfront. The whole scheme will complement the improved quayside with links through to the castle priory precinct and city centre. It will provide jobs, homes, enterprise and devolved public space.”

The Environment Agency has already started work on the flood protection scheme for the area so that, by the end of 2006, the entire length of the built up riverside west of Carlisle Bridge, including Luneside East, should be protected from flooding.

David Hopkins

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