Parkside Regeneration has appointed global built environment consultancy Arup to deliver a sustainability strategy for the £100m first phase of regeneration at the former Parkside Colliery.

The company says political, economic and societal factors are driving rapid change in expectations of what constitutes responsible and sustainable development.  Arup has been appointed to review its approach to all aspects of the scheme’s design and construction with the aim of ‘raising the bar’ for projects of this nature.

“Parkside will become an exemplar of how to future-proof a large, complex project of this type,” said John Downes, chairman of Parkside Regeneration and group chief executive of Langtree, which is developing the scheme in a joint venture with St Helens Council.

“It is far from straight-forward but Arup lead the field in this area and, with their help, we will deliver a project that matches economic and social value with environmental performance,” added Mr Downes.

The global consultancy’s brief includes, but is not limited to:

Benchmarking • Energy Usage and Generation • Health and Wellbeing • Transport • Ecology • Zero Carbon • Materials • Innovation

“The sustainability agenda is now a mainstream consideration, with major end-users and funders only interested in supporting projects that deliver best practice,” explained Lisa Harris, St Helens Borough Council executive director for place.

“We’ll leave no stone unturned to find the optimal way to deliver the project and it will become a benchmark for other developments in the borough and Liverpool City Region . This activity fits with our plans in response to the council’s climate emergency declaration and will help to make our borough greener as set out in our St Helens Together Strategy and ensuring a green economic recovery,” she added.

Commenting on their appointment, Andy Sheppard, sustainable buildings associate at Arup, said: “Working with Langtree and St Helens Council is a tremendous opportunity to help them turn their passion for sustainability into practical solutions for this important development. We’ll be using our expertise to help Parkside keep pace with increasing demand for sustainable design and operation from tenant organisations, employees and communities.”

Arup will now begin work alongside the project’s planning consultants, engineers, architects, landscape designers, transport engineers and energy provider to assess current plans and identify areas for improvement.  Parkside Regeneration has already committed to achieving a BREEAM Excellent accreditation and the objective is now to ensure this environmentally focussed commitment is continued across all aspects of the scheme’s design, engineering, materials palette and construction.

Parkside secured consent in late autumn for 1m square feet of logistics space following a public inquiry.  The first phase of the project is scheduled to open in Q2 2024.  Work has already begun on the construction of the £38m Parkside Link Road by St Helens Council, which connects the site to Junction 22 of the M6.   The link road is scheduled for completion at the end of December 2023 and is being built by Balfour Beatty.