Traders have spoken of their delight at an East Midlands Property Alliance scheme to regenerate part of Nottingham city centre – bringing the area back to life and boosting start-ups and small businesses through workshops and studio space for use by creative enterprises.
Local traders at Sneinton Market have spoken of their excitement at development in the Eastern Gateway to the city centre, with new units rapidly taking shape as the Creative Quarter develops.
One such trader is Tony Brack, owner of One BC Clothing, which has been relocated by the city council from the market to Gedling Street while the improvement works take place.
Tony said: “This redevelopment has been needed for a very long time, since well before we moved into the market over 10 years ago. It is absolutely wonderful to see the work taking place and to be able to watch the project as it progresses to completion.
“Sneinton Market has always had the potential to be a creative hub for the city – like many of the artistic and creative areas you see in lots of other cities across the UK and Europe.
“These works will mean our market will soon be on a par with such areas and will attract many more visitors to the area. We can’t wait to see the completed, redesigned market.”
The £3.6m project, supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), is being carried out through the empa framework. The main contractor on the project is empa partner Wates Construction, which began working on site in October last year and is expected to complete works by October this year.
The rejuvenated site will include workshops and studio space for use by creative enterprises and local businesses.
The works include refurbishing the external façade and roofs, refurbishing the unit fronts and external walkways and spaces and improving the internal spaces, providing lettable space for new businesses.
Owner of Hayman Graphics Ltd, Barry Hayman, has run his business from Sneinton Market for 10 years, growing from a one unit bay to eight units. He said he couldn’t wait to see the finished new-look market.
“The buildings were in desperate need of renovation, so I’m very glad it is now happening,” he said. “I’m sure the refurbishments will have an impact on footfall for businesses, as the redesigned market will have a more welcoming and open feel for visitors.”
Richard Scarrott, Business Unit Director, Wates Construction Midlands, added: “There is a real sense of excitement for the development of Sneinton Market and it gives us great pride to deliver projects that bring such a positive local impact.
“Nottingham City Council’s aspiration is not merely to refurbish a building, but to use it to create a new vibrant destination in the city’s Creative Quarter. We are working closely with them to bring that vision to life.”
Councillor Nick McDonald, portfolio holder for jobs and growth at Nottingham City Council, said: “Having worked for some time to bring Sneinton Market back into full use, this is a significant milestone in the regeneration of the city’s Creative Quarter.
“The redevelopment work will improve this important part of the city’s heritage and bring jobs and growth to the local economy. The potential of Sneinton Market has always been huge. As a place for creativity, start-up businesses, arts and crafts, culture, markets, and as a focus for supporting students and graduates, it has enormous potential.”
Head of empa, Alan Coole, said the project was one which really stands out in empa’s wide ranging history of community-focused developments.
He said: “The regeneration of local communities, including public sector schemes to boost commerce, is at the heart of what we do at empa.
“We have predicted that savings of between 9 and 14% will be made on the overall project costs through using the empa procurement route, collaboration and intelligent design, enabling more to be delivered within the project budget – a key driver behind why more public sector bodies are choosing empa to deliver their construction projects.”