Extraordinary new pix show how an 11-storey apartment block and Roman visitor attraction will look

The Eboracum Roman visitor attraction. Images: Vincent & Brown/North Star

Plans have been submitted for an 11-storey apartment block and Roman visitor attraction to be built in York city centre.

The site will feature a “world-class” tourist attraction named Eboracum on the ground floor and basement, a shop, and 290 luxury residential apartments on the upper floors as well as a roof terrace.

The 11-storey block of flats
If the scheme gets the green light, Northern House, Rougier House and Society Bar will be demolished to make way for the development.

The plans were submitted by York-based developer North Star and York Archaeological Trust (YAT).

Sensitive giant

The view from the roof of the new bloc
A spokesman commenting on the height of the new building said: “The plans have been revised following extensive consultation with the local community and all stakeholders, and we have leading heritage experts on our team advising us on the design and massing of the building.

“It has been designed to be an iconic building for York, whilst also fitting in with its sensitive surroundings.”

Surrounding buildings vary in height from three to nine storeys, according to the application.


Developers say the scheme will add an extra £252m to the York economy over the next 30 years and create more than 450 jobs.

The visitor attraction will become one of the UK’s must-see attractions – according to the report – and will feature “the sights, sounds and smells of Roman York”.

It is set to be completed in time for YAT’s 50th anniversary – in 2022.

Dig this city

You can have your say on the new plans
There will be a two-year archaeological dig at the site before building work begins.

David Jennings, YAT’s chief executive, said: “Before the Coppergate dig, York was known predominantly as a Roman city, but JORVIK Viking Centre changed that perception, and we’re now better known for our Viking heritage.”

He added:

  • This dig is the most significant single Roman excavation ever undertaken in York.

    We have the skills and expertise to explore, preserve and interpret everything we find to add more depth and colour to our understanding of Roman York, and the unique soil conditions here which preserve organic matter will give us more insight than ever before into how Roman citizens lived here – what they ate, how they cooked and even what illnesses were rife during this period.

    The potential for discovery is enormous, and it is highly unusual for us to be able to plan a brand new, state-of-the-art visitor attraction to display our finds even as they are coming out of the ground.

What do you think?

It will transform the area
Residents have been asked for their thoughts on the plans and developers say 88 per cent of people back the scheme.

You can see the plans here.

A North Star spokesman said:

  • We have been very encouraged with the public response to the proposals since we launched them earlier this year.

    People recognise the many benefits that this vision will bring and we firmly believe these plans will massively improve this part of the city centre and act as a catalyst for wider improvements.

    The aim is to create an iconic building that the city can be proud of.

Decorative bronze panels highlighting York’s heritage and designed by a local artist will be installed on the building.

Intense competition

Designed to be sensitive to its surroundings
The application says competition for land to develop housing and tourist attractions in York is “intense”.

It adds: “The city of York is undergoing a period of significant change.”

“Its population is growing; its economy is diversifying; and its universities and colleges are some of the fastest growing educational institutions in the country.


“The competition for land to develop new homes, offices, tourist accommodation, and other activities is intense.

“York’s rich legacy of Roman, Viking, medieval and other period remains attract millions of visitors every year.”

If the Rougier Street scheme gets the green light, Northern House, Rougier House and Society Bar will be demolished to make way for the development.

Iconic building

A river view of the development
A spokesman commenting on the height of the new building said: “The plans have been revised following extensive consultation with the local community and all stakeholders, and we have leading heritage experts on our team advising us on the design and massing of the building.

“It has been designed to be an iconic building for York, whilst also fitting in with its sensitive surroundings.”

The application says surrounding buildings vary in height from three to nine storeys.

Developers say the scheme will add an extra £252m to the York economy over the next 30 years and create more than 450 jobs.

4 thoughts on “Extraordinary new pix show how an 11-storey apartment block and Roman visitor attraction will look

  1. I think the building will be much too high and is not sympathetic with the traditional buildings in York. It’s too modern in design.

  2. I’m glad the original proposal for some of the development to be a hotel has been scrapped in favour of more housing, and I hope the greenery makes it to the final plans as Rougier street really needs it.

  3. Yet another disaster for York. Firstly & most obviously, it is too high & will nominate the skyline. ‘Iconic’ usually just means feeding the architect’s ego; like this would, no doubt. The other obvious lie is ‘fitting in with its sensitive surroundings.’ In what wat does concrete pillars & huge sheets of glass fit in with a medieval city, or a Victorian one, or however one describes York. If this is passed it will once again suggest that our weak, visionless Council are susceptible to any old ‘line’ thrown at them, or perhaps to ‘back-handers’ from the developers?

  4. Love the look and feel of the scheme. Great to bring more folk to the South Bank of the river. With the resurgence of Micklegate will make York an even better city and spread out the visitor trade.

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