The past year has been a confidence boost for business growth in and around Lincoln as new start-ups and larger chains moved to the city. Significant investments have been made to give stores and venues a fresh new look, and the City of Lincoln Council and Lincolnshire County Council have been working to secure additional funding for business development and transport projects.
From January to December, here are The Lincolnite’s top business picks of 2015:
Teal Park continues expansion boosting the local economy
January saw the first announcement for expansion plans to Teal Park with a new 26,700 sq ft industrial/warehouse scheme planning application. Since then, the business park has grown with a £2 million development to support local businesses and create hundreds of jobs. The plans were unanimously approved in April for the scheme which would build on North Kesteven District Council’s £21 million capital programme for supporting business growth.
Sealing the deal
Lincolnshire County Council signed a formal declaration of economic collaboration with the Chinese province of Hunan in September, opening the gates for further industry co-operation, friendship and common prosperity. Chinese delegates visited the county exploring the opportunities available including the Engineering Hub at the University of Lincoln before signing a formal declaration.
Developing the Brayford
Developers revealed £20 million plans to turn two buildings on Lincoln’s Brayford into new apartments, restaurants and office space. The development will incorporate Mill House, formerly occupied by Mouchel, and Viking House, which is currently used by Jobcentre Plus.
Creating business developments
North Kesteven District council invested in a £2 million project, which will create 19 new industrial units at Blackwood Court on North Hykeham’s Teal Park.
Plans were revealed by Lincolnshire Co-op to expand the Carlton Centre off Outer Circle Road, Lincoln. Ongoing talks involve super-sizing Lidl and attracting new retailers to the centre.
A new purpose build DPD warehouse is expected to open in the New Year, creating up to 90 jobs at an industrial park off the A46 Lincoln.
The Mall shopping centre redevelopment
The future of The Mall shopping centre was uncertain at the beginning of the year after an announcement that the building had been earmarked for a redevelopment worth hundreds of thousands of pounds.
In May, it was confirmed that The Mall will become part of expanding restaurant chain Wildwood. Although this was expected to be open by Christmas, work has not yet started.
Lincoln Transport Hub redevelopment plans
Plans for a £25 million transport hub for Lincoln were revealed in January, which would provide the city with a new bus and train station, a 1,000 space car park and new pedestrian footbridges. The City of Lincoln Council confirmed that they would contribute a total of £2.1 million to the development.
In February, construction company Willmott Dixon won the contract to deliver the transport hub and in the following months, the council secured and agreed additional funding, increasing the cost of the project to £29 million.
Councillors unanimously approved the plans submitted for the hub in October and a final business case is being prepared for submission to the Department for Transport in February 2016.
Plans for a second floating restaurant on the Brayford
Lincoln-based Stem Architects, on behalf of Investors for Lincoln, revealed plans to build a second floating restaurant on the Brayford waterfront area of the city in January.
Due to resistance to the plans from campaigners, the company went back to the drawing board until November when new images of what the restaurant would look like were released. No date has been set for proposals to go before the city planning committee.
Lincolnshire Digital Awards
The first ever Lincolnshire Digital Awards, organised by The Lincolnite’s sister publication Lincolnshire Business, were held in March with over 60 entries for the eight different categories including Best Use of Digital Photography, Innovation in Web Design and Digital Business of the Year. Also find out more about the first Lincolnshire Business Expo on January 21, 2016 at the Lincolnshire Showground.
Lincoln Cornhill Quarter development
Plans for a £70 million redevelopment of Lincoln’s Cornhill Quarter were unveiled in February by Lincolnshire Co-operative, which would see a combination of refurbishment, extensions and new development in the area.
Despite the plans receiving positive feedback in March, an online petition was launched in May over possible plans to close the Corn Exchange market, which reached just over 2,100 signatures. Co-op confirmed that they would be working closely with market traders for location where required.
Draft Local Plan
The next phase of the Central Lincolnshire councils’ Draft Local Plan was revealed in August. It is anticipated that upon completion it will create 11,894 full-time-equivalent jobs as well as an additional 36,960 new homes – 23,000 of which will be in Lincoln. Further planning revealed in September that six sites, including three in and around the city, had been earmarked as key zones for investment and job creation.
An expansion in education
Plans for the £16 million Isaac Newton building on the University of Lincoln Brayford Campus were approved by the City of Lincoln Council in May. BAM Construction won the construction contract in September with work expected to be completed by early 2017.
A new £23 million Riseholme College campus was given the green light in February and is the first new agricultural college to be built in the last 50 years. The new site at the Lincolnshire Showground officially opened after an investment of £13 million on November 20 with phase two still underway.
Lincoln University Technical College (UTC) officially opened the doors to its new premises on Lindum Hill at the end of November after spending its first year in a temporary building. The new building was delayed due to a number of historic relics being found, which required further investigation.
Living in student luxury
Luxury student block The Gateway was completed in time for the new influx of students in September. The £28 million flagship accommodation development by Jackson & Jackson Developments made room for an additional 519 students in the city, creating 12 new jobs and it includes a ground floor coffee shop and offices.
Water House also started development at the beginning of the year based on the same designs as The Gateway and will contain nine kitchens, 13 bathrooms and 15 bedrooms.
Tennyson Homes created a ‘landmark Colosseum development‘ of houses ranging from £450,000 to £940,000 with the unique aspect of living in an oval. The 14 Georgian-style homes offer between 2,575 sq ft and 5,200 sq ft floor space. The Lincolnite took a tour of the development in May.
Science and Innovation
In the most unusual of ways, as the University of Lincoln Tortoise Charles Darwin ate his way through a ribbon of leaves at the official opening of Joseph Banks Laboratories at Lincoln’s Science and Innovation Park in April. Over the next decade, City of Lincoln Council have backed plans for the continued expansion of the Science and innovation park with an ambitious £50 million project. These plans included the demolition of the former Ruston Bucyrus buildings in order to make way for the Boole Technology Centre.
Discount supermarket comeback
Netto returned to Lincoln in October after a five-year departure. The new store opened on Lindis Retail Park, off Tritton Road, which was formerly occupied by Blockbuster. Just next door, Lincoln’s first Poundworld opened on the same day. Some 50 new jobs were created between the two stores.
New to Lincoln
New restaurants, shops, bars and businesses have been cropping up all around the city in 2015. Some of the new businesses include:
- Madame Waffle which opened in June, offering a unique coffee and dining concept in the form of a rustic independent waffle house
- A new 24 hour gym in St Marks, Pure Gym, which opened in April
- An Irish/American-inspired bar Rogue Saint also opened in April
- The Cardinal’s Hat, a new bar on Lincoln’s High Street in September
- Lincoln’s first wine bar since the 1970s, Optimist Wine Bar opened in September
- The county’s largest bike shop at Doddington Hall opened in October
- An american style bar and grill Huckleberry’s, which saw its first customers at the end of November
A bit of a refresh
Other businesses have made considerable investments to get a new look, some even moving premises. These include:
- A £2 million investment for a new Lincolnshire Co-operative funeral home, now based on Tritton Road in Lincoln opened in January
- A £1.2 million revamp for Yarborough Leisure Centre opened in February with a new 2-storey gym, cycling studio and other improvements.
- Camper UK reopened in February in a new location after a devastating fire broke out at its old premises in January 2014
- Home nightclub invested in a £130,000 renovation which was opened by Katie Price in July
Securing the funding for growth
In January, the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership secured an additional £14.8 million for the government’s Growth Deals on top of the £111.2 million that had been secured in 2014. The Growth Plan is expecting to be able to create 13,000 new jobs and boost the Greater Lincolnshire economy by billions of pounds.
The Lawn redevelopment
Redevelopment plans for The Lawn in the uphill area of Lincoln are underway as the preferred bidder for the site revealed the first draft plan in December. RW Stokes & Sons and Banks Long & Co are currently conducting consultations on the plans with local residents and neighbouring businesses, prior to finalising the planning application for the site.
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