Mayor Marvin Rees gives backing to Wapping Wharf plans

12-storey building will replace iconic shipping containers

<p>Plans for the new landmark building, known as ‘Wapping Wharf North’, were revealed on Tuesday.</p>

Plans for the new landmark building, known as ‘Wapping Wharf North’, were revealed on Tuesday.

Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees has backed plans for a 12-storey building in Wapping Wharf, hailing the development as ‘potentially fantastic’ for the city.

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If greenlit, the ‘landmark’ building would feature new apartments, a rooftop restaurant and a ‘continental-style’ covered market.

Plans for the new landmark building, known as ‘Wapping Wharf North’, were revealed on Tuesday.

But the plans attracted criticism from some on social media when it was revealed the tall building would replace the area’s iconic blue shipping containers housing dozens of independent eateries, collectively known as CARGO.

Speaking at a press conference this morning (Wednesday, June 22), Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees said the shipping containers had been a ‘surprise success’ and he could understand peoples’ attachment to them.

“But they were only ever meant to be temporary, they were supposed to be there for five years and have been there for six now, as a meanwhile use of that land.

“And I think if there is any sadness at the departure it just shows how successful that meanwhile use of that land has been, when it could have been left dead and derelict.

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“But the scheme that’s coming through is potentially fantastic for us. It’s obviously got to go to planning, but we’re talking about building with veritcal gardens, high density and in the middle of the city on brownfield land.

“So in terms of us minimising harm from the enviornmental and ecological pressures we’re facing, this is exactly the type of place we need to be building.”

Managing director of Umberslade, Stuart Hatton, also defended the plans when he spoke to BristolWorld on Tuesday.

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He said that the firm had been the past 18 months engaging with the businesses at CARGO over the proposals, and that he planned to retain ‘as many as possible’ as ‘they are the ones who make Wapping Wharf what it is’.

“There has to be a degree of trust. Retaining the essence of Wapping Wharf is a challenge but it’s not one I can afford to get wrong,” said Mr Hatton.