A major redevelopment scheme is getting under way to transform a derelict parcel of land within Bristol’s Old Market Conservation Area into a mixture of much needed new homes and modern student accommodation.
Midas Construction, part of the Midas Group, has started work on site at the £24 million Unity Street project which will bring new life to the area known as the Backlands, between Jacob Street and Unity Street.
The scheme is being carried out for Harmsworth Pension Fund, together with Bankfoot Development Consultants. It follows on from Midas’s successful £25 million redevelopment in 2017 of the nearby former Bristol Post print press site into the impressive Print Hall student accommodation hub, also for Harmsworth Pension Fund. Phase one of the Print Hall redevelopment won a prestigious RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) Regeneration award.
The Unity Street project will see three existing redbrick ‘buildings of merit’ on the Backlands site retained and converted to retail, restaurant and office space.
Other structures will be demolished to make way for two new blocks of between two and six storeys featuring 202 student studio bedrooms as well as 48 residential properties, with 29 private homes and 19 affordable units within shared ownership.
Hawkins Street will be closed and a new green landscaped public open space created. A new road, to be named New Hawkins Street, will also be built.
Derek Quinn, Executive Director for Midas Construction, said: “This is an exciting next phase in the regeneration of this area of the city. Like the neighbouring Print Hall, it is about using high-quality redevelopment to establish new uses for buildings, to redevelop in a way which is sensitive to the historic nature of this part of Bristol and to re-energise it as part of a thriving, busy community.
“We are delighted to again be the contractor of choice for Harmsworth Pension Fund and to be working with Bankfoot. We believe this says a great deal about our proven track record in delivering complex inner-city projects like the Print Hall and moreover the wider success of Midas’s strategy which is to develop long-term relationships based upon excellent customer service.”
The project will be completed in the summer of 2019.