Plans for an enormous two hectares of green space in Leeds have taken another step forward. After two years in the pipeline, project leaders Vastint UK have named the area ‘Aire Park’. An important part of the wider South Bank Leeds regeneration project, Aire Park will be split into five different sections and include an outdoor theatre.
Situated at the heart of South Bank, its name recognises the area’s heritage and the significance of the River Aire. Before the 1800s this was the location of a meadowland hamlet, after which it developed into an industrial centre. Now in the 21st century it will become a stunning city park.
Aire Park will be the central point of the extensive South Bank redevelopment. This green space will enrich visitors’ and residents’ experiences of the new Leeds by providing somewhere peaceful to escape the hustle-and-bustle of city centre life and unwind.
In October, the park hosted one of the highlights of this year’s ‘Light Night Leeds’ event. ‘Pleasance’ by Novak transformed the site into a “multi-sensory immersive, family experience” for the duration of the two-day festival. In the days before the festival, Andrew Cobden, managing director at Vastint UK, said that there was “no better way to offer a first glimpse of Aire Park; the new city park.”
In the immediate vicinity of Aire Park is the vibrant South Bank and all of its amenities. As well as over 8,000 homes planned here; there will also be plenty bars, eateries, fitness facilities, retail outlets and even a skate park. Vastint UK’s vision for South Bank is to create a new district that will reconnect all areas of Leeds.
South Bank will also be a place to work. The project will create over 35,000 jobs in the area; drawing even more skilled professionals to Leeds to work and live. South Bank is already a key location for top employers, with Sky and Asda’s headquarters based in the area. It is also a leading area for Yorkshire’s digital economy, with a cluster of over 250 digital and creative businesses situated here.
Perfectly positioned in Leeds city centre are Aire Park and the wider South Bank. The city’s retail and financial district, the bustling Calls, Leeds station and the River Aire waterfront are all close by. There are plans to create a new multi-story car park to help with connectivity, and South Bank is even proposed to become the HS2 station for Leeds.