Plans to turn Park Hill block into student accommodation submitted to Sheffield City Council

Sheffield's Park Hill flats.
Sheffield's Park Hill flats.
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Plans have been submitted for the next phase in the redevelopment of Sheffield’s iconic Park Hill flats - providing living accommodation for more than 70 students.

An application for The third phase of the redevelopment has been submitted to Sheffield City Council by Alumno Student Developments Limited and Urban Splash as joint applicants, detailing a total of “74 student accommodation units”.

Developers are also applying to create a range of mixed-use commercial space around South Block, where the student accommodation would be housed, car parking spaces and cycle storage.

Phase 2 of the plans -to provide almost 200 residential units, commercial space and car parking - was approved in 2017 and work is set to begin this year.

The first phase - which saw the regeneration of 263 flats, of which almost 100 were classed as affordable homes - was completed in March 2016.

“This application comprises the third phase of the Park Hill Estate regeneration,” documents submitted by Alumno states.

“Park Hill is one of the most important post war housing schemes in Britain, reflecting the influence of European multi storey architecture and a key component of Sheffield’s cityscape.

“Built in the early 1960s by the Corporation of Sheffield (now Sheffield City Council), the estate in its entirety was designated Grade II-listed by Historic England) in 1998, in recognition of its character as archetypical of the Brutalist style of the era.

“Key features such as the balconies, the ‘streets’, the balustrades and the stairs are to be retained and refurbished, ensuring the original design of Park Hill remains prominent as part of the new student accommodation use.

“Colours are also added to walls and soffits so as to reimagine the theme established in the original building design.”

The flats, built in the late 1950s, have become a regular feature of film and television, with Doctor Who using them as a location for scenes, as well as Sheffield-based Warp’s Ghost Stories, starring Martin Freeman.

They are also featured in an Arctic Monkeys video and are referenced in the Pulp track ‘Sheffield Sex City’.

For years the estate has divided opinion of people in Sheffield, with some seeing them as a blot on the landscape, while others believe they are a key part of the city’s heritage.

In 2016, Park Hill made fifth in the ‘Dirty Dozen’ in the Channel 4 show Demolition - which asked members of the public nominate the buildings around the country they would most like to see pulled down.