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Noticed news on some new developments in Little Germany in Bradford. I know Bradford rarely gets a mention given that Leeds seems to have developed and is developing so quickly but having vaguely seen the front page of the Argus with the designs on they look fairly noteworthy. A link to the Argus story is attached, unfortunately with no pictures. Bradford slowly seems to turning the corner. Hopefully this is not old news.

http://www.thisisbradford.co.uk/bradford__district/bradford/news/BRAD_NEWS0.html
 

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Sounds good, and the design sounds interesting, nice to see some development slowly creeping into Bradford and Wakefield.
 

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Yes, it's about time Bradford started to see some development. The 11 storey Thornton Road is pretty big too, but looks awfull (from the poor image I saw in the T&A the other day) very boxy and plain, looks really low rise as there's no vertical element in the design.
 

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I expect Bradford to see a different style of development seen in Leeds though, I think there will be alot more conversions and facelifts to what is already there in Bradford rather than the building of lots of new buildings like in Leeds.
 

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That's probably quite true, Bradford has loads of old mills in and around the centre that are itching to be transformed, many of them almost falling down and Bradford really needs to do something with them. They are quite an eyesore as they are now, but could become a characteristic feature of the Bradford residential market.

There's little point in Bradford trying to compete head to head with the likes of Leeds and Manchester as they will always be behind, but instead they would do well creating their own rather unique identity.
 

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haven't seen the thornton road plans - anyone got a link? it's excellent news to hear that something's being done there, anyway.

and yes, there certainly are a lot of promising conversion sites around bradford, but a lot of them are beyond repair. the thornton road & sunbridge road area in particular looks ready to fall down.

what concerns me most is the lack of uptake in new developments. our much-touted little germany area is still a ghost town, just a slightly posher one than the rest of the city. and the new building on centenary square, the best location in town, has only let two units so far, out of about six. how is the city ever going to develop, if it can't fill what's already there?
 

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There appears to be an excellant opportunity at the old Odeon site, as it is the prime site in Bradford, we'll have to keep our eyes on that one.

It will be difficult if take up is low, perhaps developers are aiming at the wrong market or in the wrong areas (ie too much in Little Germany), but the leisure facilities are growing apace with the new cinema leisure unit and the large new shopping mall, I'm sure the right developemnts in the right places will succeed in the end.
 

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there was an article in the independent a couple of weeks ago about bradford, and the (alsop) plan for the odeon seemed to be, knock down the main building but leave the two domed towers freestanding. it looked, needless to say, a bit shit. my grand plan would have the odeon turned into a museum of british cinema or something similar, tied in with the nmpft just over the road.
 

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what concerns me most is the lack of uptake in new developments. our much-touted little germany area is still a ghost town, just a slightly posher one than the rest of the city. and the new building on centenary square, the best location in town, has only let two units so far, out of about six. how is the city ever going to develop, if it can't fill what's already there?

There is certainly uptake in the right areas. The new scheme set at the old Empress Pub site is already 80% sold and this is even before it has been built. There is definitely high demand in Bradford at the moment. The council recently predicted that the population in the city centre is going to increase from 800 to 7,500 in the next 10 years which is astonishing considering the slow start.

As for the Centenary Square building you are right. The units in this building should have been snapped up in next to no time. However, I heard a new chinese/thai restaurant is scheduled to move in and also another restaurant. It would have been nice to have a few nice trendy bars in this prime location. I seem to remember a large screen being proposed for this building. Is this still going to happen?
 

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I personally think the old Odeon building should be completely knocked down and replaced by a truly stunning new building. This would be a bold move but one that would show intent and tell everyone that Bradford is moving into a bold new and exciting future.
 

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if its going to increase to 7,500 it needs to get a move on! I just hope it doesnt slow the growth of Leeds, I dont think it will though, Leeds is a much bigger city, probably appealing more to financial markets instead of Bradford which could be qutie touristy and marketed as a base to explore the Dales, and taking advantage of its industrial past.
 

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i don't see where a screen could go on the new building, unless it's on one end, which would only be good for distracting drivers on thornton road. as for the city centre population increasing by 1000%, i can't see it happening in the near future. plenty of the apartments are already there, and they're empty. i really do hate to be this pessimistic about the place.
 

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Leeds No.1 said:
if its going to increase to 7,500 it needs to get a move on! I just hope it doesnt slow the growth of Leeds, I dont think it will though, Leeds is a much bigger city, probably appealing more to financial markets instead of Bradford which could be qutie touristy and marketed as a base to explore the Dales, and taking advantage of its industrial past.
Perhaps for now, but in the future Bradford will be a city that would be far easier to 'mould' in terms of mass redevelopment. Thats as long as the city authorities and its people are open minded about it.
 

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I think they are quite open minded- they've got that massive plan to change the whole city centre centred around that lake.
 

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Leeds No.1 said:
I think they are quite open minded- they've got that massive plan to change the whole city centre centred around that lake.
The lake will never happen.

I completely agree with Martyn, it's great to see new developments for Bradford, but first there needs to be the demand and until more major employers move to Bradford the demand won't exist. I would also question whether upmarket flats should be the priority for regenerating Bradford, good quality affordable housing is surely far more needed.

Bradford should be in a good position to attract employers given its excellent transport links and office rent must be far lower than comparable space in Leeds, however it still has image problems which will remain until the city centre gets sorted out. Hopefully the new development around Forster Square will help regenerate the city centre.
 

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I saw program not so long ago about the council efforts to attract new people and new business it was presented by Kirstie Allsopp and she loved the place! mind you she was being paid to go there.


Date: 20/10/04

Relocate to Bradford says TV property expert

Channel 4’s Location Location Location presenter Kirstie Allsopp is backing Bradford’s bid to attract government jobs moving out of London.

Kirstie visited the District (Friday, Oct 15) to take part in filming looking at the residential property market. It’s all part of a new DVD being produced by the Council’s Regeneration and Housing Department to promote Bradford as an ideal relocation base for up to a 1,000 civil service jobs.

Kirstie toured the area in an Audi TT sports car, provided by Bradford Audi, as part of the film which will be in the style of the latest TV property programme.

The finished film will be aimed at civil servants and their families who will be relocating from the capital.

A major report by Sir Michael Lyons, commissioned by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, has said that substantial savings and efficiencies could be made by moving up to 20,000 civil service posts away from London to the regions.

Bradford’s case has been boosted by a major review by property specialists King Sturge who ranked the city as one of the leading potential destinations for a major public sector relocation.

Now the Council’s Regeneration and Housing Department is working with Bradford Centre Regeneration, the company responsible for delivering the transformation of the city centre, and Yorkshire Forward on a campaign to bring these London jobs to the District over the next five years.

Kirstie said: “You can’t believe it when you come up here. There’s the architecture, the moors, everyone is so friendly and you think ‘why would you not move up here?’”
 

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heavymetalmayhem said:
Kirstie toured the area in an Audi TT sports car, provided by Bradford Audi, as part of the film which will be in the style of the latest TV property programme.
I hope that she didn't stop in Bierley or Holmewood, or even slow down, the wheels would have been nicked. ;)

heavymetalmayhem said:
Kirstie said: “You can’t believe it when you come up here. There’s the architecture, the moors, everyone is so friendly and you think ‘why would you not move up here?’”
Give me a while, I'm sure I can think of a reason why I wouldn't want to move to Bradford...
Where do you want me to start Kirsty?
 

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The Gatehaus

Thought I'd bring this one back from the dead considering The Gatehaus is coming on quite a bit and is about half way through construction. The attached buildings have reached their full 6 storeys while the 'Fin' is at about the same level with still 4 or 5 storeys to go. Here's some construction pictures anyway:

Pictures courtesy of Baht'at of http://www.bradfordvision.co.uk



Not sure what the final materials will look like on it for definite, although the brick wall in the lower foreground seems to detail materials at least better than the Rawson Quarter et al. type developments we've been getting. There needs to be more clear cut stone bricks used, not these phoney textured concrete 'stone' blocks.



From a bit further away. Seems to be about 5 or possibly 6 storeys at the moment.



This one I took myself from the top of the Richmond Building on the University Campus. You can see the development on the skyline marked by the red netting and concrete in the background.

Not sure when it'll be complete but should be some time in 2007. It seems they're already applying the materials and cladding (for lack of a better term) to the adjoining lower buildings as they're covered in plastic.

The building should provide for 142 apartments and some cafe/bar/offices on the ground and some of the lower floors. They seemed to have been snapped up fairly quickly apparently.

Here's some renders of what the project should look like when complete:















There's also this video on the official Gatehaus website giving a 3D look of the place in the same graphics engine as the latter four pictures posted above:

http://www.thegatehaus.co.uk/gatehaus.html
 
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