Urban Splash Newsplash - December 2018
Another year draws to a close, and oh what a 2018 it’s been.
We’ve celebrated turning 25 (thanks to everyone who celebrated with us, visited our exhibition and helped us make our way through 2,500 bottles of our anniversary beer); we’ve enjoyed creating modular Houses, and adding more commercial space to our investment portfolio – signing some big name occupiers too.
So kick back, grab a mince pie and let us walk you through the past 12 months.
January - We kick off the year of House
We hit the new year running, announcing two new investors in our modular homes business; architect and TV personality George Clarke and We Buy Any Car founder Noel McKee joined the team, setting us off on a year of House.
February - Avro takes off
Not forgetting our roots, our love of Victorian mills and turning them into beautiful, contemporary spaces, we launched Manchester’s biggest loft apartments – ranging from 1,500 to 3,000 sq ft – at Avro in February. The final homes at this beautiful old building – once home to AV Roe’s iconic aircraft manufacturing business – are on sale now.
March - We bought our own modular factory
In March, we nailed our colours to the modular mast, agreeing a deal to buy SIG plc’s offsite factory and vertically integrating modular operations into our business. It means we’ve now got capacity to create 400 homes per year.
April - US goes on tour!
In April we launched our It Will Never Work exhibition in Liverpool, in collaboration with RIBA North. It chronicles 25 years of award winning developments against the social, political and economic backdrop of the day. The show’s since toured Birmingham, London, Manchester and Sheffield, attracting thousands of visitors.
May - Launch at Boat Shed
Boat Shed, a 90s style office block in Salford Quays, underwent quite a facelift this year and in May we announced our plans to invest further at the scheme. We also celebrated the arrival of a host of new occupiers including Lupo Caffé, Hat Trick PR, Novo Innovations and Capital Growth Group Ltd. In May we also completed the sale of Ducie House, one of our first ever commercial schemes in Manchester, to TCS.
June - Our tenth acquisition in two years
We’ve added 10 sites to our investment portfolio in the past two years, with Crabtree Lane in Openshaw, a 28,500 sq ft industrial unit, the latest acquisition. Other recent acquisitions include Beehive Mill in Ancoats – the former home of Sankey’s – and 4 Canal Street in Manchester’s gay village.
July - Partying like it was 1993
August - Bringing new homes to Birmingham
We started work on site at Port Loop in Birmingham this summer, alongside partners Places for People, Canal & River Trust and Birmingham City Council. The scheme is one of the largest regeneration projects in the country, ultimately delivering 1,150 homes; the first of them, our modular Town Houses, went on sale in October.
September - Read all about US
Our anniversary celebrations continued with the launch of our new book. It Will Never Work is 200 pages of images old and new, thought provoking analysis, and some very kind words from all nine past presidents of the RIBA, who cited our work as a “joy”, a “delight”, “ahead of the curve”, and praised our “wild confidence” in turning schemes into “humming urbanity full of people, energy and life”. Why thank you.
October - New homes in Bristol
We launched 136 brand new homes for sale in Bristol at Copper Building. With prices from just £150,000, the homes overlook a private lake and 10 acres of residents’ gardens including allotments and an orchard.
November - Penthouse pods at Lister Mills
We completed work to our 30 penthouse Pods at Lister Mills in Bradford. The futuristic zinc-clad Pods are an aesthetic contrast to the building’s original fabric, resulting in some very special homes and the best views in Bradford. The homes will be available in January and you can register your interest now.
December - Final piece of the jigsaw at New Islington
We’ll be recharging over Christmas, and getting ready for 2019 when we plan to deliver the very last new homes and work spaces at New Islington. We’ve been regenerating the area for 18 years now, helping our partners create a school, a clinic, a park, a marina as well as loads of great new homes and businesses. Next up, we’re launching Mansion House apartments and more family Town Houses. Register your interest now to be the first to hear about them in the New Year.
Urban Splash in the press - 2018 highlights
“Urban Splash’s colourful and quirky developments helped revive sites in Manchester and the north... The hundreds of awards Urban Splash has accumulated... have helped endear them to politicians and planners.”
— Property Week, November 2018
“one of the world's leading regeneration firms...”
— Liverpool Echo, March 2018
“Urban Splash’s Irwell Riverside development, near the city centre, sets a benchmark in funky, flexible, modular housing”
— The Sunday Times, August 2018
“Sheffield has been reinventing itself as a northern capital of cool. There's no bigger indication of this than Park Hill...”
— The Sunday Times, November 2018
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