St Pauls Tower Completes
It's been a long time coming but the Conran and Partners designed City Lofts St Paul's Tower in Sheffield has finally been completed and is now fit for habitation.
At 101 metres tall, it's the tallest building in Sheffield by far with the main tower and its adjoining 12-storey cousin containing 316 apartments, 88 parking spaces, and about 2,000 square metres of ground floor retail space.
It hasn't been smooth sailing however for the project since it first surfaced in 2005 in the heady days of the Blair Boom. After being scaled up in size, the problems began following the collapse of the developer City Lofts. The bank that underwrote the project, German financial giant Hypo Real Estate, had to step in to fill the funding gap and keep construction going in mid 2008.
At the same time the tower also ran into difficulty as cladding fitted on the structure didn't have planning permission and as a result of this, completion of the exterior of the building was further delayed whilst the developers had to apply for permission for new cladding.
Despite this, contractors such as Shepherd Construction were pleased as it meant they got paid anyway even if there was little work to do causing cost overruns of millions for Hypo Real Estate.
The tower represents one of the final parts of the so-called Heart Of City scheme, officially known as St Paul's Place, that has also seen a metallic multi-storey carpark built, the tallest dedicated such structure in the United Kingdom, along with two office blocks of approximately 35 metres all designed by Allies and Morrison Architects but the final part of the scheme, a 13 floor, 59 metre tall office block is yet to be built.
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