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Sharp fall in major projects

The fifth Annual Planning Survey, published by the British Property Federation and GL Hearn, has found that planning applications for major development projects in the South West have fallen by 40% in 2015-16 compared to the previous 12 months. The research, which examined major application decisions across four boroughs in the region, found major applications fell across each area monitored (North Somerset, Bristol City, South Gloucester and Bath). Overall, there was a year-on-year decline of 40% across the region – from 180 major planning applications in 2015 to 108 in 2016. Tony Clements, head of GL

Hearn’s Bristol office, said:“With the housing shortage becoming ever more acute across the region, it is imperative that this decline does not continue into 2016-17. “We need to work together

to deliver innovative solutions and policies that will help get Britain planning again.”

A new manager for Finzels Reach F

inzels Reach, the new quarter being created in the heart of Bristol city centre, has a new development project manager.

Laura Hamer-West has joined Cubex, the Bristol

based commercial and residential property developer behind the regeneration scheme. Laura (pictured) will work closely with

Cubex’s director Gavin Bridge to complete the regeneration of this 4.7 acre site, which sits on the south bank of the Floating Harbour across the river from Castle Park. She joins from project

management consultant Turner and Townsend where she was a senior project manager working mainly on higher education building projects and on the Ministry of Justice’s Prison Transformation Programme. The Finzels Reach development is one

of the largest mixed use developments in the South West and includes 440 new apartments, two Grade A office buildings, a 168-bedroom Premier Inn which is due to open in 2017, plus a host of cafes, restaurants and a microbrewery. One of the office buildings, Bridgewater House, is

‘This is a really important city centre site’


Aurora, the only speculative office building under construction in the city. One of Laura’s first tasks at the site will be to oversee

the completion of a new iconic S-shaped pedestrian and cycle bridge that will connect Finzels Reach with Castle Park, creating a direct route between Redcliffe, Temple Meads and Cabot Circus. The installation of the bridge superstructure is due to start next month with the bridge opening at Christmas. A new ferry stop is also being created to encourage passengers to alight for the short

walk to Cabot Circus. Laura said: “This is a really important city centre site and it’s exciting to be working with Gavin on the next chapter of

its development, managing the design and construction teams and supporting him in negotiations with potential business and leisure space occupiers. “The new bridge is going to be a crucial

link that will really help reconnect this part of the city centre. Its spectacular design will

be a fantastic new addition to the floating harbour. It’s a great time to be joining Cubex and taking on this role.” Cubex bought the former Courage Brewery and sugar

now home to over 900 employees from BDO, Barclays Wealth and EDF and work is already well underway at

refinery site out of receivership in July 2013, supported by its long term investment partner Palmer Capital.

28 insight NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016

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