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Council inviting proposals to transform former John Lewis site

Barker's Pool

Sheffield City Council is inviting interested parties to submit development proposals for the five-storey Barker’s Pool Building in the city centre, formerly home to John Lewis.

The Council has now instructed property experts CBRE to test the market and is inviting high-quality development proposals to be submitted via a two-stage process, initially seeking expressions of interest by the end of June 2022.

Since acquiring the lease of the property from John Lewis in January, the Council has been busy securing the building and commissioning surveys and investigations on the site. Works to remove asbestos and strip out the building will commence in the next few months, with anticipated completion in Spring 2023.

Whilst a recent public consultation on the future of the building showed a preference for demolishing the building and replacing it with a new, smaller building and outdoor space, the Council is keen to ensure that all options are explored – including repurposing the current building.

The Council is encouraging proposals for the site that will add to the vibrancy and popularity of Barker’s Pool, which is home to numerous bars and restaurants, and encourage even more people to visit and enjoy the city centre.

Kate Martin, Executive Director at Sheffield City Council, said:

“We know how important this property is to the people of Sheffield and this is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to reshape a key city centre location. The decision on how the property and location is reimagined and its future use will be carefully considered.

“Although removing the existing building is an option, we are keen to ensure we examine all the options on the table, so we can make a fully informed decision. We plan to make the most of this rare opportunity and develop something truly special for Sheffield.

“As part of this process, we are inviting imaginative and deliverable proposals for either refurbishment or redevelopment of the property and are open to ideas around its future use. We look forward to receiving submissions of outstanding quality that will genuinely add to the vibrancy of the city centre and attract the widest possible number of Sheffield residents and visitors to the city.”

Alex Andrews, CBRE’s UK Development Advisory Team, commented:

“The Barker’s Pool Building presents an exceptional opportunity for a developer to bring forward a creative solution for this prominent property, delivering a sustainable, environmentally friendly scheme, which in turn will capitalise on the growth and development already being delivered across Sheffield city centre.”

Councillor Mazher Iqbal, Executive Member for City Futures: Development, Culture and Regeneration at Sheffield City Council, said:

“The Barker’s Pool Building is a key site in the city centre and there is potential for something fantastic to be created moving forwards. We have high ambitions for the future of the site and hope to see some creative, exciting proposals that reflect the wealth of talent and ideas on offer in Sheffield.

“The feedback from our recent city centre consultation showed a preference for replacing the current building with a smaller building and outdoor space, which is something that will be explored - however we want to keep all options open at this early stage.

“Heart of the City is playing an import role in transforming the city centre and giving a new lease of life to under-used areas to make sure we’re meeting the needs of residents, businesses and visitors.

“Going out to market with the Barker’s Pool building is an important step in securing a bright future for this site that we can all be proud of.”

A copy of the Barker’s Pool Building marketing brochure can be requested by emailing CBRE at