Nearly 200 flats to be built in York city centre – but none of them are for sale

An artist's impression of the development showing the view from St John's Square looking at the corner of Block G
23 Jan 2018 @ 7.11 pm
| Environment

Nearly 200 flats are to be built in York city centre, in what developers call an exciting new concept for the city.

Developers have unveiled their plans for the next phase of the huge Hungate site, in the east of the city centre.

They plan to build a large block at the part of the site nearest The Stonebow, between Garden Street and Hungate itself, on the space currently occupied by the development’s marketing suite.

The proposed block includes 12 studio flats, 117 one-bedroom flats and 67 two-bedroom flats, giving 196 in total, but none will be available to the public to buy.

Encourage social interactions

The sixth floor roof terrace with views to York Minster

The block has six storeys at its lowest point and eight at its highest point, and would surround a central garden courtyard. There is also a rooftop garden on the sixth floor, and shops, offices or cafés and restaurants on the ground floor.

The development will include a concierge service, and the developers say: “The design approach is to encourage social interactions between residents to help foster a thriving community within the building.”

They want the entire development to be “build to rent”, which is aimed at institutional owners and private renters.

Agents for the developers, Hungate (York) Regeneration Ltd, say: “Block G is located closest to the city centre in the most urban environment and so is considered most suited for young professional sharers.

“Research on York’s demographic suggests there is high demand for studios, one and two bedroom apartments to accommodate the growing number of graduates who wish to stay in York.

“The proposed residential mix reflects this.”

Live in the entire building

The view from Stonebow looking towards Block G

The developer says it is one of only a few new proposed developments in the UK aimed solely at the managed rental market, and say it would “introduce a new and exciting concept to living in York.” They say high-quality management and good facilities inside and outside the building would help create a good living environment.

They say: “The over-riding principle of a ‘build to rent’ scheme is that the resident lives in the entire building, not only their apartment…

“Spaces are designed to be attractive and inspiring, and facilitate interaction between residents, creating a sense of community within the building.”

Although planning permission for the principle of the development has already been approved, the details need to be approved by the council.

Historic England has raised concerns about the proposed colour. The developer wants to use a pale stone colour, but the conservation body says that has historically been used in York only for public buildings, and they prefer a slightly darker tone.

Original plans changed

The view as envisaged down Carmelite Street

The masterplan for the whole Hungate site was approved by the city council in 2005, but after some work, the development stalled during the economic downturn in 2008.

It resumed in 2014, but the original plans have been changed, reducing the commercial aspects and creating more homes.

Alongside the flats, insurance firm Hiscox has moved to the site and a new hotel is planned behind the Black Swan pub.

The city council had originally planned to put its own headquarters on the site, but that plan fell through.

You can see the planning documents or comment on the application here.