Heritage group praises Sheffield Council over Heart of the City II development

A heritage group has praised Sheffield Council for listening to their concerns over a proposed city centre development.

Wednesday, 25th March 2020, 6:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 25th March 2020, 10:44 am

Earlier this month council chiefs unveiled ‘Block H', a plan to transform an area of the city centre between Wellington Street, Carver Street and Cambridge Street into offices, bars, restaurants and shops which forms the latest stage of their ambitious Heart of the City II project.

Earlier plans for the area which were abandoned during the last recession saw much of the historic building in the area demolished in favor of new developments.

But the latest plans - which have been designed to retain much more of the area’s unique heritage - have met with strong approval by campaigners.

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Artist's impression of Block H's office building, H2.

Howard Greaves, the chairman of Hallamshire Historic Buildings, said the council had changed its approach to the site in two ways – and should be applauded for it.

He said: “The first is that they saw the existing buildings as an asset, something that gives this area bags of ready-made character that will make it somewhere that people will want to spend time in.

“That is character that cannot be bought, and when it's gone, it's gone for good.

“The second is that they talked to heritage campaigners while drawing up their plans.

Artist's impression of Block H on Cambridge Street.

“It's simple, really. Find out the value of what you've got from the people who know, then plan what to do with it.”

Block H is the latest stage of Sheffield Council’s ambitious Heart of the City II development, a £500m project to transform 1.5 million sq ft of land between Pinstone Street, Barker's Pool and The Moor.

When complete, Block H will include a brand new office building - H2 - as well as two other developments - H1 and H3 - which will retain as much of the existing architecture as possible.

A public consultation on H2 and H3 is underway now and can be accessed at www.heartofcity2.com/public-consultation/ until April 14.

Planned public drop-in sessions have been cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Twenty years ago, Heart of the City I brought the Winter Garden, Millennium Gallery, Peace Gardens and the offices of St Paul's Place.