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LJMU reveals new £64 million Copperas Hill plans

New £64 million plans for Liverpool’s Copperas Hill site have been unveiled by Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU).

A two-phase transformation of the three and a half-acre plot, which was formerly home to the Royal Mail sorting office, is being proposed.

The university’s previous plans for an ambitious £100 million redevelopment of the area were shelved in 2016, and then the building was demolished in 2017 to pave the way for a new scheme.

Subject to planning approval, the new project will begin with the creation of a Student Life Building and a Sports Building in phase one.

The buildings are both expected to be completed by summer 2020 and will be accompanied by new public spaces to help enhance the area.

Professor Nigel Weatherill, vice-chancellor of LJMU, says: “Copperas Hill is an area with significant potential for the university to create open pathways and public realm which will connect our two existing campuses in Mount Pleasant and Byrom Street.

“We have taken time to develop the plans for the regeneration of Copperas Hill and we believe we have now arrived at the right approach.

“The scheme provides for the development of two major LJMU buildings set within new public spaces and landscaped routes. It will transform this area of the city for our students and staff, as well as for the residents and communities around this site.”

Copperas Hill

The Sports Building will house indoor facilities including an eight-court sports hall, gymnasium and facilities for teaching and research in sports studies as well as new sports facilities for students, staff and Students’ Union clubs and societies.

The Student Life Building will provide a new home for student-facing services such as careers advice, international exchanges, counselling and wellbeing support as well as a dedicated space for the Students’ Union.

Faithful+Gould has been appointed via the Pagabo Professional Services in Construction and Premises public sector framework to work on the scheme’s project management, quantity surveying, principal design and as employers’ agent.

The firm will work alongside architect practice Sheppard Robson; civil, structural and building services engineer Cundall; fire engineer WSP and planning consultant Barton Willmore on the scheme, which is part of a wider LJMU masterplan investment.

Meanwhile the dovetailing of LJMU’s Copperas Hill proposals, along with the Fabric District vision, Merseytravel’s plans for Central Station and various private sector schemes are said to be key to a new masterplan which will be developed by Liverpool City Council for a £2 billion gateway regeneration in the city.

The local authority has today (8 March) started advertising a contract to procure the services of experienced planning experts to independently produce a Spatial Regeneration Framework for the Knowledge Quarter Gateway (KQG), which will aim to connect the Knowledge Quarter and the city centre by redeveloping the Lime Street area around the Adelphi Hotel.

The council will seek to appoint the commissioning of the report on 25 April.