Executive Travel & Sightseeing

Paintworks set to grow

ONE of Bristol’s most popular developments is to almost double in size over the next two years.

Developers Verve Properties and building firm Crest Nicholson have joined forces to develop and expand The Paintworks scheme off Bath Road in south Bristol.


Crest Nicholson is best known in the area for its redevelopment of the Harbourside and the Portishead Marina complex.

The extension to the business park will include more than 220 new houses and flats, shops, offices and the redevelopment of a recording studio used by the BBC.

 If all goes to plan, work will start on the site this year and will be completed within 18 months to two years.

The work will see part of the site, which is occupied by business units and empty buildings, demolished to make way for the new buildings.

Deal Or No Deal, which is presented by Noel Edmonds, is filmed at the complex.

Three years ago the BBC signed a deal with Endemol, owners of the gameshow, to produce the programme.

As part of the multi-millon-pound deal, the studio at The Paintworks will be redeveloped and used to produce other television programmes.

BBC Studios and Post Production – a commercial offshoot of the corporation – will be responsible for the management and operation of the studio.

Crest Nicholson and Verve Properties have signed a joint venture which will see the third phase of The Paintworks scheme developed within a matter of months.

The plans include 221 houses and flats along with 61,700 sq ft of space for businesses and offices. There will also be 5,000 sq ft of space for shops and bars, along with 11 more studio units.

The Paintworks is inside the enterprise zone. The development will be one of the first major schemes to get off the ground since the zone was launched officially, 12 months ago.

The zone was set up by the West of England Local Partnership. The aim is to create thousands of new jobs in the area around Temple Meads station.

Developers have also announced that a new office block is to be built on Glass Wharf next to the existing Burgess Salmon building. The office block, which is being built speculatively, will be one of the biggest and most modern in Bristol when it is completed.

The Paintworks is considered one of the most successful schemes of its type in the country.

It is home to dozens of creative and digital firms including web-design specialist E3.

Designed by elected mayor George Ferguson’s practice, the first phase of the scheme was completed by Verve seven years ago.

The new creative quarter was built on a derelict site alongside the River Avon. The site is a former Victorian paint factory.

The third phase of the development includes mainly 1960s and 1970s warehouses. In contrast to previous phases of the scheme, the existing buildings will be demolished rather than converted.

Benjamin Miller, a development director at Crest Nicholson South West, said: “This is an exciting development of new homes for Bristol and we are delighted to be partnering with Verve to deliver it.

“The Paintworks is a fantastic creative hub for the city that is already drawing a lot of attention. We anticipate high demand for our flagship collection of houses and apartments when they are launched on the market next year.”

Ashley Nicholson, Verve director, said: “Our partnership with Crest Nicholson provides us with the specialist skills to deliver the substantial residential element to consolidate our vision to create a new community in this previously-derelict piece of land.

“Having created the destination and active employment it is logical to bring people in to live on a greater scale than previously. We remain committed to the idea this will be a vibrant piece of townscape.”

Upmarket estate agent Savills has been taken on as the residential agent for the third phase by Verve, while Alder King is the commercial agent for the business side of the development.

Outline planning permission has already been granted for the scheme which will include demolition of most of the buildings on the eastern half of the site.

The new buildings will be constructed with spaces below them for parking and cycle storage in a semi-basement. The aim is to create a pedestrian-friendly and attractive environment across the development.

A new diagonal route will cut across the site, linking The Paintworks with the nearby Sparke Evans Park. There will also be a series of inter-linked courtyards along the footpath, with a large central square which will be at the centre of the whole Paintworks development.

The design is similar to the existing buildings to ensure the two developments sit alongside one another.

A similar scheme was completed recently at the nearby HTV studios.

The Set is a high-tech, design-led area based at the Bath Road Studios, and is home to the ITV West Country studios.

The new office space is being run by the London-based property company Cube and operates as a membership club.

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