At Leeds Victoria Gate, Hammerson is working with Leeds City Council and principal contractor Sir Robert McAlpine to enhance the ongoing regeneration of Leeds. The development is creating jobs, training and new business opportunities, as well as supporting programmes that promote healthy living and wellbeing. The team is also working closely with local traders and neighbours. The result? A scheme with strong local support, representing a huge opportunity for retailers and local people.
2,000 job opportunities
Employment and Skills Charter with Leeds City Council and John Lewis
Delivering employment skills training for local young people
Boosting local enterprise
Promoting healthy living
Leeds Victoria Gate is a 34,300 m2 scheme, delivering John Lewis’s first store in the city, together with 30 retail and catering units. As well as regenerating the physical space, the £165 million scheme will deliver around 1,000 retail and catering jobs, and employ around 1,000 people on site during construction. Planning approval was granted in September 2013 and construction began in April 2014. The scheme is due to open in late 2016. Proposals are also in place for a further phase of up to 73,000 m2.
Hammerson’s sustainability vision is to create retail destinations that deliver positive impacts economically, socially and environmentally. Leeds Victoria Gate is a fantastic opportunity to deliver this vision. This case study focuses on economic and social impacts. Information on environmental initiatives is available here.
Hammerson and Sir Robert McAlpine’s dedicated community managers are delivering a range of initiatives at Leeds Victoria Gate to support the regeneration of Leeds and deliver positive economic and social impacts, including:
How to engage with the local community throughout the construction process?
The construction of any major scheme can cause significant impacts on local people and businesses. It is therefore important to keep the local community informed and engage with them throughout the process. At Leeds Victoria Gate, the project team:
In addition, they regularly host site visits for local schoolchildren, students and residents, as well as giving career talks at local schools and supporting initiatives such as Open Doors Weekend, a nationwide scheme to increase awareness of the construction industry. All of this builds local goodwill for Leeds Victoria Gate, reflected in the project’s 43/50 Considerate Constructors Scheme score, rated Excellent or Exceptional on every aspect, including community.
How to minimise potentially negative impacts on local infrastructure?
To reduce the number of heavy goods vehicles and vans going to and from Leeds Victoria Gate, which affects local road networks, the demolition team re-used 99% of all demolition waste on site for the piling mat. This avoided 650 vehicle journeys, cutting traffic congestion and reducing impacts on air quality, as well as saving £247,000 on disposal and materials costs. In addition, when the monthly meetings with local market traders identified that the loss of parking during the development was affecting market trading, Hammerson purchased and refurbished a nearby car park to help address the problem. Leeds City Council also agreed to the first half hour of parking being free for market customers, to further support trading. The completed Leeds Victoria Gate scheme will offer a multi-storey car park for up to 800 cars. Initiatives such as these have not only managed impacts, they have built local goodwill.
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Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council
“It is one of our top priorities as a council to ensure that everyone in the city shares the opportunities provided by economic development as we forge forward for the future. We work closely with developers and companies setting up in the city to ensure that employment for local people is high on their agenda and I am delighted that John Lewis and Hammerson are taking their responsibilities seriously.”