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Momentum Lewes Rd Preston Barracks public consultation

Preston Barracks public space sketch

Draft plans for Momentum Lewes Road, the regeneration of Preston Barracks and the University of Brighton’s Moulsecoomb campus, which is expected to create over 1000 jobs and attract over half a billion pounds into the city’s economy, will be on display for comment at a public exhibition which opens today [April 22].

A joint planning application for three sites; the University of Brighton’s Watts car park and Mithras car park sites on either side of the Lewes Road and neighbouring Preston Barracks, will be submitted to Brighton & Hove City Council Planning Department by U+I Plc and the university later this year.

Richard Upton from U+I Plc said, “The partnership aims to create a new place that is lively and bursting with creative energy, delivering a wonderful place to live, work and learn. This major development will act as a marker to the city from the north, whilst contributing a vibrant new place with a melting pot of uses, which will complement the existing community.”

A 50,000 sq ft ‘central research laboratory’, acting as an incubator centre and cutting-edge facility to support new, hi-tech and design-led manufacturing start-up companies and entrepreneurs will be at the heart of the Preston Barracks site. It has attracted a £7.7 million grant investment from the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership.

Approximately 350 new homes, including affordable homes, will line new green public spaces. Small independent retail units, workshops and cafes will be provided at street level and new routes will be created to provide better connectivity from neighbouring residential streets to the Lewes Road and Moulsecoomb Railway Station.

There will be a new home for the university’s Brighton Business School along with new teaching and learning facilities.

The scheme as a whole will deliver around 1,300 student bedrooms at Preston Barracks and on the Mithras House car park, ensuring provision of quality, managed accommodation for students at the university and taking the pressure off private rented accommodation.

All existing university parking spaces will be replaced by a multi-storey carpark on the Watts car park site and there will be additional car parking at Preston Barracks to serve the new residential and business uses.

Addressing a detailed brief for development by Brighton & Hove City Council and working with award-winning architects Studio Egret West and HASSELL, this employment-led regeneration scheme will create an estimated 1,065 new jobs and contribute £511.28 million to the city’s economy over the next ten years.

The university and U+I have an established working relationship that dates back to 2006 and have worked closely, alongside Brighton & Hove City Council, on the development now underway at Circus Street in Brighton city centre, adjacent to the university’s Grand Parade campus.

Cllr Warren Morgan, leader of Brighton & Hove City Council, said, “Preston Barracks has been on the drawing board for 14 years and it is a key site for new affordable housing for local people, jobs and growth. Brighton & Hove City Council City Plan envisages a joined up approach should be taken to development along the Lewes Road so it’s great that we are working in partnership with U+I and the University of Brighton to drive forward this much-needed regeneration.”

Professor Debra Humphris, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton, said, “We see this as a great opportunity to improve the facilities we have for our students and staff as well as to open up our sites on the Lewes Road to the local community. This is a very exciting proposal for the city and for the university – one which will create an open and attractive location which generates jobs, brings economic benefit to the city and will reduce pressure on the private housing market.”

The exhibition is open to the public from 12pm to 8pm on Friday April 22 and 10am to 4pm on Saturday April 23 at FIELD at Preston Barracks and then will be taken to Churchill Square in the city centre on Saturday April 30 and Sunday May 1. See www.momentumlewesroad.com for more information.

Note to editors:

About U + I Plc: U + I is a leading specialist mixed-use regeneration developer specialising in transforming complex and challenging sites into healthier, happier and more prosperous places, creating new jobs, homes, retail and leisure facilities and generating value not just for the company and its investors, but lasting value for local economies, communities and businesses.

A market-leading pioneer in public private partnerships with a development pipeline of c£2.5bn, U+I creates social and economic growth through design-led and innovative redevelopment in lost pockets of London and the South East. It is also leading the development of Circus Street in the city centre, in partnership with the University of Brighton, Brighton & Hove City Council and South East Dance.

University of Brighton: The University of Brighton is one of the most popular universities in the country in terms of student applications. It has a distinguished history going back to 1859 when its first classes were established in Brighton’s Royal Pavilion. It was the first university to be named The Sunday Times ‘University of the Year’ and it won the ‘Outstanding contribution to the local community’ title at the Times Higher Education Awards. In 2011 the university won further international recognition for its community projects through the MacJannet Prize for Global Citizenship.

An independent report in 2014 calculated that the University of Brighton contributes close to £700m annually to the economy and supports more than 7,000 jobs. Over 20,000 students study University of Brighton programmes from foundation degrees to doctoral research programmes. Courses span a wide range of academic and professional disciplines and the university receives national and international recognition for its research activity.