igloo was named preferred partner in 2022. Credit: via Active Profile

Development agreement paves way for 375 Newcastle Helix homes  

A joint venture between the city council, Newcastle University, Legal & General and igloo Regeneration will advance a low-energy housing development in the 24-acre urban quarter.

Newcastle Helix is billed by the partners as the largest UK urban regeneration site outside of Kings Cross, being a tranche of the city reshaped to support international tech and science businesses, academia and locals alike.

A formal development agreement has now been reached, following the selection of igloo as preferred development partner in summer 2021.

This agreement will allow the team to move forward a planning application later this year before progressing with a phased construction programme over the next five years.

The partners said that housing development at Newcastle Helix will be led by energy efficient, low carbon design, integrating historic ‘west-end’ architecture with the existing modern buildings. The mix of one-to-four-bedroom apartments and townhouses will use solar power, connecting into Helix’s district energy centre.

Public realm and landscaping will also be a focus. Developer igloo has previously completed neighbourhoods in the Newcastle region, including The Malings and Lower Steenbergs Yard in nearby Ouseburn Valley, andi s also advancing the mixed-use Stephenson Quarter’s next phase, with the Pattern Shop now meaningfully complete and seeking tenants.

Joe Broadley, development director at igloo said: “Newcastle Helix is a great example of a public-private sector partnership delivering much-needed housing within a very exciting city centre innovation neighbourhood.

“Guided by the igloo footprint® approach, we are excited to engage with the local communities in the area, and work with our partners to design an exemplar housing scheme where people can live a vibrant, healthy lifestyle and be just a stone’s throw away from all that Newcastle has to offer.”

Cllr Alex Hay, cabinet member for a thriving city at Newcastle City Council, said:  “I am delighted that the council, university and Legal & General have reached this milestone with the appointment of igloo to continue developing Newcastle Helix - one of the city’s flagship mixed-use development sites which brings pioneering research and commercial opportunity together, creating high-quality jobs as part of Newcastle’s inclusive economy.

“From the outset, housing was always going to be a critical part of the site to create and deliver another dimension in its regeneration. The proposals for low-energy sustainable homes, which sympathetically fit into the local environment, heralds a new and exciting chapter in the development of Newcastle Helix.

“Any plans for housing will be subject to thorough public consultation and full scrutiny by the planning process before any decisions are taken by the planning committee.”

There are already nine completed buildings on the Helix site, with a wide variety of occupiers, research, education, a district energy centre and commercial office space.

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A great looking concept and mix of uses. What’s not to like?

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