Talking Points

Former police station set for transformation into new community in North Leeds

Date 19/10/22

Pickard Properties, the family-owned property developer and landlord, has submitted plans to transform a former police station into a new community within North West Leeds.

The developer, which has a portfolio of properties it has developed or refurbished to retain as landlord, is proposing to regenerate the site of the former Weetwood Police station into a purpose-built residential scheme.

Comprising 127 built-to-rent apartments, the scheme will create much-needed new homes in this popular area of the city. 

With a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, the scheme will be highly-energy efficient and benefit from solar power, EV charging points along with a ‘green roof’ on accessible roofs, which will be covered in moss to increase biodiversity and act as a natural air purifier.  

The scheme will also enhance the local environment with green communal areas and landscaping to complement the established tree line, which separates the site from Otley Road, and will be expanded with the planting of new trees.

The communal landscaped areas will also be publicly accessible with new pathways proposed that will allow local people to walk through and enjoy the green spaces.

If planning permission is granted by Leeds City Council, considerate demolition of the existing buildings is expected to begin in early 2024 with construction expected to begin later that year.

The site was acquired by Pickard Properties, advised by Fox Lloyd Jones, after West Yorkshire Police closed the station and put the building up for sale in 2020. 

The company has formed an experienced development team to take its proposals forward including Leeds-based planning consultants, Quod, architects Halliday Clark, based in Ilkley and Project Management & Quantity Surveyors Fox Lloyd Jones, also based in Leeds.

It will form part of Pickard Properties’ ongoing strategy to regenerate locations within the Leeds and West Yorkshire area, which it can not only develop, but retain, own, and manage for the long-term.

It follows its current development at Spinning Acres in Headingly, which is transforming a site that contained derelict university accommodation into a build-to-rent enclave of high-quality apartments and high-end townhouses, along with the sympathetic regeneration of historic mill houses.

Miles Pickard, director of Pickard Properties, said: “The site presents an ideal opportunity to transform previously developed land into a vibrant new community, complementing neighbouring green spaces with high quality apartments that are designed to be sympathetic to their surroundings. It will also make an important contribution to the growing demand for new modern homes in Leeds.”

“We are committed to create high quality, sustainable homes that bring added economic and social value to areas across Leeds and West Yorkshire.  The former Weetwood Police Station site is an exciting opportunity for Pickard Properties to enhance our long-term relationship with this part of Leeds.”

Tim Waring, Senior Director at Quod, said: “We have worked closely with planning officers at Leeds City Council to develop proposals for a scheme that will not only fit seamlessly into the local area, but will bring about a sustainable and high-quality, sensitive transformation of this site.  Being in a highly sustainable location and on a main route into the city, the scheme will help to meet local housing needs as well as attract those keen to relocate to Leeds and support the city’s ongoing economic growth and regeneration strategies.” 

Richard Walsh, Director at Halliday Clark, said: “Sustainability has been placed front and centre in the design of these apartments.  In addition to creating impressive new homes, the development will adopt high environmental standards that respond to the city council’s climate emergency agenda. It has also been designed to utilise green energy solutions and enhance biodiversity and local green spaces. We have paid especial attention to retaining the mature landscape setting of the site, which is both a valuable biodiversity resource and an important part of the character of this part of north Leeds.”   

Daniel Jamieson, Director at Fox Lloyd Jones, said: “The materials and construction methods that will be employed in this scheme will be highly sustainable and be sympathetic to the local area.  It will provide residents with a landscape-orientated and safe environment, which can also be enjoyed by the local community, alongside well-designed, well-constructed and excellently finished homes.”  

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