Leeds property boom begins

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Leeds is in a property arms race with Manchester, according to leading estate agents from the city, writes Sharon Dale

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The battle for supremacy could help fuel a second city living revolution and Leeds looks set to benefit from the bounce over the next decade.

Jonathan Morgan of city living specialists Morgans, said: “We are on the cusp of another raft of development and I think we will also see a return to buying off-plan. The good news is that we are seeing some real thought going into design. The apartments of tomorrow will be much better than some of those built in the boom. That will be something to shout about.

“Manchester is very good at promoting itself and that’s something we need to do more.”

The issue has reignited the debate over whether Leeds or Manchester is capital of the North, a sought-after title thanks to the Government’s bid to create a Northern Powerhouse.

Manchester boasts two Premier League football teams, an international airport, trams and Media City. It also has swagger and an adventurous, politically stable city council.

But Leeds has things in its favour too. Mark Manning, of estate and lettings agents Manning Stainton, said: “The big difference is that Manchester is sprawling. You have to go a long way before you hit countryside. That’s not the case in Leeds, which is more compact. There is a supply and demand issue and this is exacerbated by the fact that there has been very little building over the last few years.”

Back in LS1, the lending drought has not stopped building with ongoing schemes at the Ironworks, 15 townhouses in Holbeck Urban Village and the Victoria Gate shopping centre.