THE developers of a £150m scheme for a riverside city centre location hope to change their plans for the site.

A fresh planning application has been made for the former passport office site, in Durham for a new mix of apartments, a hotel, and offices.

The Milburngate site is being developed as a joint venture of Arlington Real Estate and the Richardson family.

The new plans include 153 apartments, a 92-bed Premier Inn and 5,000 square metres of offices in the first phase of development, which will cover around 70 per cent of the sic-acre site.

It means more homes are brought forward in the first phase of development, as well as office space, which had previously been planned for later stages.


The plans for the seven-storey Premier Inn have been altered after its design was strongly criticised by councillors earlier this year

Allan Cook, managing director of Arlington, said: “This enhanced first phase of development at Milburngate will accelerate delivery of the scheme and deliver a greater blend of complementary uses earlier than originally expected. This is further testament to the very strong interest we have had from national and regional occupiers alike which is great for Durham city as well as the wider region”

“The growing trend for mixed-use city destinations has influenced our updated designs, particularly to help businesses attract young professionals who want to live, work and enjoy themselves in city centres.”

The development will include an Everyman cinema, and bar and restaurants, Pitcher & Piano, Bar + Block and Miller and Carter.

Previously, the company secured detailed planning permission for 291 residential units and a mix of office, retail and leisure facilities, as well as outline planning permission for a further 150 flats and offices.

It expects to submit a further planning application for the remaining 30 per cent of the site.

If approved, it is hoped building work will start in 2019.


Ben Holmes, director at Richardsons, said: “The updated designs for the first part of Milburngate, which include important feedback from local stakeholders, reflect the synergies we aimed to achieve across the whole development.”

“Delivering elements of the development earlier than originally planned, to complete 70 percent of the entire project, will support Milburngate’s position as a catalyst for job creation and a magnet for leisure visitors looking for a premium and unique experience unavailable at other locations in the North-East.”