The rejection of this tower and the Credit Crunch has ensured no world-class proposals will be built in Liverpool for a long time
World Class Brunswick Quay Proposal
- Rejected After Appeal

This rejection may set the city back decades
Appeal Rejection Will Deter Quality Investors

The rejection of a high quality tower well away from the World Heritage Site zone and buffer zone will deter investors. This is a serious retrograde step for the city.

No Vision in Liverpool

Chris Ives, the director of the developers Maro, said: "If we had gone to Manchester, Newcastle or Leeds with this building we would probably already be on site." He expands, "Liverpool city council doesn't have any vision - they can't see around corners".

Brunswick Quay Would Have Made Lifeless Dock Area Vibrant

The dead lifeless area around the South End Docks would have been made vibrant by the thousands of people living in the tower and the people the facilities it would attract.

This area was screaming out for such a top developement.

Government Planning Inspector Agrees that Site is Ideal for a Tall Building

The site is at a bend in the river. An escarpment starting from the north of Everton in the north end of the city, running across Liverpool, tails off to the river to the south of the site, making the site an ideal location for a tall building. Two aspects converge, the river bend and the escarpment tails off to the river.

The government planning inspector agreed that the site was ideal for a tall building.

Liverpool Planning Department Proven to be Incompetent

The government planning inspectorate stated this development should have proceeded. This would have prevented the intervention of Whitehall in the form of Ruth Kelly. The competency of Liverpool City Planning department is yet again exposed.

Ulterior Motive For Rejection?

The governments top planners were behind the proposal as was the MP whose constituency it fell into, who is of the same party as Ruth Kelly. The council who rejected the tower are LibDems.

The excuses for rejection are flimsy and most bodies were for the tower. Why was it really rejected?

World renowned Architect

Brunswick Quay is designed by world renowned British architect Ian Simpson - who was invited to tender for the World Trade Centre replacement in New York, reaching the semi-finals.

EU & Government Money For Liverpool?

Brunswick Quay was a much needed world class iconic multi-million pound investment into the city. Why should the EU and UK government continue aid when the  city itself rejects much needed investment? Why should public money be used when the city rejects private money? All relevant questions. The Brunswick Quay proposal was no stealth approach to reclaim land. In fact the developer was talking about excavating parts or all of adjacent Toxteth Dock. It is a guenuine top quality proposal that will add much value to the city and immediate area.

Silesia in Poland could clearly do with some aid and the chance of them rejecting world class multi million pound investment projects is little more than nil. If the city does not get its act together the EU may rescind funding in some areas.

Appeal Rejected by Central Government

City Seething at Rejection by Minister

On the 17th November 2006 the Brunswick Quay tower appeal was rejected. The over centralised British system raised its ugly head when London in the form of Ruth Kelly, the secretary of state for communities and local government, rejected the world class iconic proposal. This foolish decision will deter advanced high quality developers from investing in Liverpool. Many people in the city see this as another move to suppress Liverpool. To keep down the awakening giant.

In her decision letter, Ruth Kelly says: "consider that the harm to the setting of the World Heritage Site, and to the setting of and views from listed buildings and conservation areas, weighs against the proposals." Kelly goes on: "consider that the proposals would be of a high quality, though not consider that the proposed buildings would be appropriate in this location." The above is so inaccurate it is laughable.

A Prime Reason for Rejection Was Views from Rock Ferry

What brings hilarity to Ruth Kelly's decision is that she said she agreed with the government's planning inspector, however her decision was based upon sight lines from the Wirral, the loss of views from the Rock Ferry conservation area and the Albert Dock. Yes, she thought the tower would obscure views of the Anglican Cathedral from Rock Ferry across the wide River Mersey. Unbelievable - Rock Ferry is not even in Liverpool. Most of Liverpool's population can't see the cathedral unless they go to the centre, so the city is penalised for the benefit of another town.

Of course the tower would obscure a view of the distant cathedral if the two were lined up. By stepping to the right or left the cathedral is then in view. How many people would stand in such a position? The cathedral and tower are way into the distance from Rock Ferry.

Tower Not Near The World Heritage Site

The tower was not proposed for the World Heritage Site zone or even the buffer zone. The tower can't be seen from the enclosed Albert Dock which is in the World Heritage Site zone. The site is quite a way at the far end of the Brunswick Dock, near the in-filled Toxteth Dock. There is the whole of Brunswick Dock, Coburg Dock and Queens Branch No. 1 Dock, before the buffer zone even starts. Then in the buffer zone there are two docks, Kings Dock and a part of Queens Dock, before the World Heritage Site zone proper.

Tower is Near a Gas Holder and Flour Mill

The tower obscures views of nothing significant whatsoever and is way away from any building of any significance. The only significant structures anywhere near is a large gas holder and flour mill. Maybe Ruth Kelly should look at a map. It is clear she has never driven or walked around the area.

This is madness. The majority of the people of Liverpool were behind this high quality proposal. The real culprits were the the City Council Planning Committee who originally rejected the tower.

This is a very poor decision detrimental to the the future of Liverpool.


Iconic 51-Storey World Class Tower Rejected by Council

Brunswick Quay, a sail shaped 51-floor tower and accompanying complex, was proposed for the South End Brunswick Dock. Simpsons, the world renowned architects, who were invited to submit a design for the new World Trade Centre in New York, reaching the semi-finals. The shape of the tower is unique and outstanding of true world-class proportions. This would be the only iconic building built in Liverpool since the two cathedrals. This complex would add vibrancy and bring life to a down at the heels hinterland and revitalise the poor recent developments in the immediate dock area.  
The tower height was limited to cater for aircraft approaches to John Lennon airport. The location is at the river locks of Brunswick Dock between the river and dock, near to the infilled Toxteth and Harrington docks. The developer Maro was considering excavating a part of Toxteth Dock to enhance the waterscape with a view to accommodate future projects.

The planning committee foolishly rejected the proposal by one vote.

One reason give for refusal by Liverpool City Council Planning department and planning committee.was the part of Brunswick Dock the tower was proposed was not in a residential zone in the Unitary Development Plan. The planning manager, Nigel Lee, adamantly refused to accept that this development was of such merit that it should be allowed to proceed. He would not accept that a truly world class building and muti million pound investment was sufficient to merit a change to the plan. The Brunswick Small Business Park consists of an old tobacco warehouse and is the only commercial part on Brunswick Dock, with most being residential.

Liverpool City Planning department and planning committee have been proved completely wrong by the government planning inspector, who diplomatically castigated the city planners. The planning department have ultimately cost Liverpool city millions in lost investment. 
The government planning inspectorate said this development should have gone ahead at the planning stage. This wold have prevented the intervention of London.

There are now very serious questions to be asked about the competency of Liverpool City Planning department.

Vibrant City on The Water? Not at This Rate

This rejection of the Brunswick Quay tower seriously curtails any tranformation to the water centric city we were promised. The poor developments around Queens, Coburg, Brunswick and Herculaneum docks are dead areas. They have little entertainment and no shopping for residents. The recent residential docks developments are clearly dead and lifeless. Brunswick Quay will add an influx of people with high expendable incomes and vitality to a poorly designed and developed dock area. The knock on effect would transform the docks and waterways around Brunswick Dock and into the hinterland beyond.

Rejection Would Dissuade World-Class Developers

An attractive world-class developement would attract other top developers to the city, with further iconic designs. A rejection on grounds of being in the "wrong place at the wrong time", will have a great negative impact, reinforcing the backward do nothing city image Liverpool has aquired over the decades. The site is not in a UNESCO World Heritage Site zone, and not even in a buffer zone.

Paul Tucker, a lawyer for Liverpool Council, at a public inquiry in June 2006, claimed plans for a 51-storey building on the city's waterfront were in the "wrong place at the wrong time". Maybe Mr Tucker can tell us when the right time was to build the city on the water we were promised.  Mr Tucker went on, "the city should not be seduced by promises of regeneration and investment". Maybe Mr Tucker was thinking that poverty and depravation was the way forward and in-filling of docks.

All photos of tower copywright of Smoothe

Planning Inspectors Report (pdf)

Ruth Kelly's Decision Letter (pdf)

The home of the skyscraper? New York? Chicago? No. Liverpool.

Oriel Chambers in Water Street, the world's first metal framed glass curtain walled building, built 1864. The building modern tall buildings are based on.
Oriel Chambers is one of the most historically important buildings in the world. The first modern building.

The home city of the skyscraper is not allowed to have tall buildings. How bizarre. How insulting. Liverpool - Home of the Skyscraper

Below: the location of Brunswick Quay Tower -  where the the two light coloured roofed sheds are on the river front to the left of the picture, next to the river locks.

           Picture courtesy of Dave Wood at Liverpool Pictorial

Left: The location of the Brunswick Quay tower is at Brunswick Dock. The land south of the river locks between the locks and the dock outlined in red.

Below: Brunswick Dock. The Brunswick Quay Tower is proposed to be built where the warehouse shed is on the left of the picture. The shed is a former tobacco warehouse. The Royal Navy Building is to the right, off picture, with patrol boats on the quays.

Below: The Liverpool waterfront skyline with the proposed Brunswick Quay tower to the right

       Copyright Smoothe