£52 million Sheffield flats scheme gathers pace

An artist's impression of the Manor Mill development, off Ecclesall Road in Sheffield
An artist's impression of the Manor Mill development, off Ecclesall Road in Sheffield

A new completion date has been set for a £52 million development of flats to house almost 900 people off Ecclesall Road - three years since the scheme was given the go-ahead.

Manor Mill student village is set to be built on the derelict former Gordon Lamb car dealership, near Waitrose at the corner of Napier Street and Summerfield Street, featuring 175 flats, cafes, restaurants and a riverside walk.

The site has lain dormant since planning agreements were signed off in 2012.

But now the project is picking up pace again, with developer Manor Property Group aiming to open to students in time for the 2017/18 academic year.

The development will be close to a planned scheme on another former car dealership between Summerfield Street and Pear Street, also off Ecclesall Road, offering 44 student apartments and 120 homes for single people, couples and families.

Meanwhile the £65 million New Era Square development near Bramall Lane - with accommodation for 700 students, a large Chinese supermarket, cafes, restaurants and business units - was given the green light earlier this year.

The projects reflect growing interest in sites on the fringes of the city centre and south west Sheffield.

Mark Bailey, Manor Property’s group development manager, said construction teams could begin to build Manor Mill within months. A new application focusing on technical details has been submitted to prevent the scheme falling foul of the three-year time limit on planning permission.

“We’re hoping to start later this year,” said Mr Bailey.

“We’ve made a material start which protects the planning permission which would have expired at the end of this month. We hope to open to the public for the term starting in 2017.”

He added: “We’re fully funded and we’re enthusiastic about Sheffield. It will take around 18 to 20 months once we’re on site.”

Manor Mill is part of a series of similar student developments across the country under the ‘Qdos’ brand, Mr Bailey explained.

“We were not ready as we’ve been developing the brand and perfecting the product roll-out across the country,” he said.

“Sheffield is one of six sites identified in the roll-out of the programme. It’s very much a standardised development.

“We’ve been sitting on it and waiting for the right time to move forward. We’re very excited about that site, I’d describe it as one of our better sites. It’s in a good position.”

In total, 175 flats will be built in a development that ranges from five storeys to 10 storeys, catering for 877 students.

The project will also involve creating a new riverside walk on a section of the Porter Brook.

As part of the original agreement, Manor Property Group pledged to give £1 million to Sheffield Council to be used to provide affordable housing elsewhere in the city.

The firm previously said the development would create 130 full-time jobs and 300 more during the construction period.

Objectors raised concerns about the area being ‘saturated’ with student housing and the height of the proposed blocks before planning permission was granted in 2011.

In response the height of the flats on the corner of Napier Street and Summerfield Street was reduced from eight storeys to seven.