Real Estate Law Blog: Developing Derby
Derby city centre is in need of an identity.
Like many city centres up and down the country, Derby has its fair share of vacant or derelict sites… but change is on the way.
The site of the former Debenhams, vacant since 2007, is due for a makeover with demolition works starting later this year and construction set to start next summer. The scheme will deliver a mix of residential units, business space and hotel, retail and leisure uses, along with a new public square, bringing much needed regeneration to the Becketwell area of the city.
This project is not the only plan in motion. Further redevelopment of the old DRI hospital site, providing around 800 homes, is to commence in the summer. Along with Derby’s tallest apartment block, known as the ‘Landmark’, providing around 200 apartments in the centre.
The concept of city living is well established in other centres and there is an acceptance that Derby needs to improve its offering, particularly around the night-time economy, to encourage people to come into the city centre post-5pm, rather than going the other way out of town and into the suburbs. Derby needs to compete with other regions to attract young talent, much needed by key local employers such as Rolls Royce and Toyota, by providing sustainable city centre living serviced by a diverse retail, leisure and entertainment offering.
Derby might not be there yet, but there are exciting times ahead and these projects are certainly a step in the right direction.
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