PARK Hill’s first residents are set to move in by the end of this year - two years behind the original schedule.
But the founder of regeneration company Urban Splash, which is behind the development, has hit back at critics and pledged the massive project will be completed ‘according to plan’.
Tom Bloxham, chairman of the company, spoke during a visit to meet Adam Jackson, the first person to buy one of the new flats which are up for sale at £90,000.
He said: “We have sold 45 of the 78 flats in the first phase, 19 of which have been reserved by private residents and 26 as housing association properties. That’s more than half of the properties sold when we are about half way through the sales period.
“Park Hill will progress according to plan and will be a great success. I am pleased with the thrilling progress to date.”
Mr Bloxham said he could not speculate whether the anticipated completion date of 2016 for the entire complex - already a year later than originally proposed - would be met.
But he added: “We are in a difficult economic environment. If I had some magic fairy dust, I could get the economy moving but things are uncertain.”
The £146 million redevelopment of Park Hill has divided opinions in Sheffield partly due to the £40 million of taxpayers’ money needed to get the first phase started.
Flats must then sell for Urban Splash to be able to obtain funding for the remaining four phases, which will create a total of 874 homes.
Mr Jackson, aged 25, said: “I work in the city centre and the location is very important to me. People should trust Urban Splash - what they’ve done so far has been brilliant.”