First look at new plans for homes at 'eyesore' in Kirkstall suburb of Leeds

A CGI image of what would be Kirkstall Place.
A CGI image of what would be Kirkstall Place.

A developer has submitted plans for more than 260 homes at a largely derelict "eyesore" in Leeds.

Artisan Real Estate wants to create a major housing complex at the Kirkstall District Centre.

Kirkstall District Centre, which has been largely derelict for years.

Kirkstall District Centre, which has been largely derelict for years.

The proposals include the creation of 80 family "town houses" and 183 apartments providing one, two, three and four-bedroom homes off Kirkstall Hill, opposite the leisure centre.

It would also provide a small commercial unit for retail or co-working office space.

Leeds Kirkstall District Centre sold for homes plan
The last original building at the small retail park was a tannery, which was demolished in 2005, and remaining plots are "largely vacant" with only three tenants still there, planning documents state.

"Substantial areas of the site are now empty and subject to issues of vandalism and fly tipping," a design and access statement reads.

Oliver Freer, director at CBRE's Leeds office, said: "We are delighted to submit a planning application on behalf of Artisan Real Estate for this key regeneration site in the heart of Kirkstall.

"The scheme will deliver much needed housing within a high-quality landscape setting making best use of the challenging levels through innovative design.

"The project team has worked closely with the local community and officers from Leeds City Council to develop the scheme which will provide a mix of residential accommodation in a very sustainable development location.”

Tesco previously acquired the site, submitting a planning application in 2011, but did not pursue proposals and the supermarket instructed agents to market the plot for disposal because of changes in the retail sector, it is understood.

In summer last year, Leeds City Council designated parts of the site it owned as “operationally surplus” to allow plans to be developed.

At the time, Coun Hannah Bithell (Labour, Kirkstall), said: “We are really pleased to see the development of the Kirkstall District Centre site as this has been an eyesore for our local residents for far too long."
The homes development would be known as Kirkstall Place, and is described as being in a "highly sustainable location" near to attractions such as Kirkstall Abbey and the Leeds-Liverpool Canal.

Clive Wilding, property director at Artisan Real Estate, said: "Artisan Real Estate is a mixed-use city centre developer and we are delighted to be preparing a scheme on this site that will deliver a mix of housing in a development that creates a strong sense of place for the local community.

"This is the same team who developed the award winning Kelham Island in Sheffield and we aim to create a similar outcome in regenerating this important brownfield site in Kirkstall."

Kelham Island, a former industrial heartland of the South Yorkshire city, has been regenerated in recent years with old factories and workshops becoming cafes, artist studios, houses and apartments surrounded in a cleaner environment by restaurants, pubs and micro-breweries next to the riverside.