Schemes get the go-ahead in Sheffield

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The ‘final piece of the jigsaw’ in Sheffield’s Heart of the City project looks set to be filled after plans for a new office block were given the green light.

Sheffield Council’s planning and highways committee gave the nod to proposals for the £20 million building overlooking the Peace Gardens on land in Charles Street, Arundel Gate and Norfolk Street.

It is hoped the development, which stalled previously when the recession hit, will meet a demand for high-quality office space in the city centre, while providing potential shop space on the ground floor.

The unanimous ‘yes’ vote in the meeting at Sheffield Town Hall marks a significant step towards completing the Heart of the City scheme, which has regenerated the Winter Gardens, with the St Paul’s Hotel and City Lofts area, since it was set up in 1995.

Coun Peter Price said: “It is a welcome addition to the city centre. This shows the confidence is still there.”

Work on the St Paul’s 3 block, which will have the same stone, bronze and glass design as its neighbouring buildings, will start in December if the council’s application for a grant from the European Regional Development Fund is approved.

Developers CTP Ltd hope to have office space open and ready for use by 2015.

Coun Leigh Bramall, Sheffield Council cabinet member for business, said: “This will be the most prestigious office block in Sheffield. We firmly believe St Paul’s 3 will help existing businesses crying out for good quality new offices, as well as potentially attracting new businesses to Sheffield.”

n It was also good news for developers of the former General Post Office building in Fitzalan Square, which is set to be transformed into a college for overseas students following planning approval. The building, empty for over a decade, will have a neighbouring tower of student accommodation built next to it.

Committee chairman Coun Alan Law said: “This is excellent news for this part of the city centre.”