Urbanite Living has secured planning consent, subject to conditions, to develop the former Yorkshire Post site in Leeds and deliver one of the city centre’s largest new residential and student living scheme.

The Leeds based developer plans to build three mixed residential towers with new amenity and public realm on the prominent gateway site that has been vacant since the Yorkshire Post group relocated in 2014.

The £400 million scheme includes three residential towers, ranging in height from 25-42 storeys, designed by DLA Architecture with Quod acting as planning consultant. The tallest two will contain 1,782 student beds in a total of 576 cluster apartments, along with ground-breaking leisure and well-being facilities. The third building will provide 348 private rent apartments with significant landscaped roof gardens, taking advantage of south facing riverside views.

Key features of the brownfield regeneration project will include a micro-forest, public square and riverside walk, joining the site up with further parts of new public realm along the riverfront.

Urbanite has pledged to work alongside Leeds city councillors to restore and resurrect the iconic Yorkshire Post/Yorkshire Evening Post mast heads and digital clock/temperate gauge within the site.

Urbanite is part of Asset Capital, a leading residential and commercial property investment company with a gross development value of more than £6 billion. The company has a development pipeline of over 3,500 student bedrooms across Sheffield, Glasgow, Birmingham, Leicester as well as Leeds and York, and is progressing further site acquisitions in key University cities across the UK.

Last year, Urbanite announced a £1 billion partnership with Prescient Capital to deliver over 6,500 student bedrooms over the next three to five years. Prescient had previously appointed Rick Gambetta of Hexagon Finance to assist with the funding of this significant development.

Daniel Newett, a founder of Urbanite, said, “We are delighted to secure planning consent in principal to develop this strategically important, landmark site and deliver much needed new mixed tenure housing in the city centre.

“Leeds remains one of the UK’s top university destinations with education space as well as student applications continuing to increase at a rapid pace. Furthermore, with a 30% year on year increase of graduate students staying in Leeds, the demand for rental accommodation is at an all time high.

“This scheme delivers uncompromising living spaces with fantastic public realm that is both sustainable and adaptable for the future whilst also supporting health and wellbeing of its occupants.”

Sue Sparling, director at DLA Architecture who is currently advising on many strategic mixed developments in Leeds City Centre, said, “We are very pleased to receive the support of Councillors on the City Centre Plans Panel for our proposed scheme on this important gateway into the city. Our design narrative really embodies the former uses of the site, woollen mill to paper mill, and embraces the local characteristics of the surrounding conservation area through form, materials and tone to create a new landmark scheme for Leeds.”

Urbanite hopes to be able to start development on site as soon as possible.