33-storey tower and hotel planned for former Leeds International Pool site

Early plans to build high rise flats, offices and a hotel on the former site of Leeds International Pool are set to go before planning chiefs next week.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 4:52 pm

A pre-application hearing will discuss the site, on which developers want to build two residential buildings, one student accommodation block and an “aparthotel”, complete with offices.

Developers were selected by Leeds City Council in September 2020 to take on the 2.8 acre site on Lisbon Street, with a planning application originally expected to include student and residential apartments, a 300-bed hotel and 150,000 square feet of office space.

According to a document written by Leeds City Council planning officers, two residential blocks, of 33 and 22 storeys, would be built on the site, providing “up to 629” build to rent flats.

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Leeds International Pool before it's demolition in 2009.

A 24-storey student accommodation block providing around 550 student bed spaces would be included on the site.

A 15-storey “aparthotel” building would provide around 120 rooms and 34,552 square feet of office space.

The plans also include “enhancements” to nearby pedestrian and cycle routes, as well as a “new glass lift and open stair access” to the nearby bridge deck on the south side of the inner ring road.

The International Pool was built during the 1960s before opening in 1967. The building was then demolished in 2009.

The building had long divided opinions in Leeds, and was seen as an example of the ‘brutalist’ architectural style popular in the 1960s.

Although designed to host international swimming competitions, the 50-metre pool was just centimetres short of Olympic length regulations, meaning major events could not be held there.

The building was originally supposed to be replaced by a 24-storey skyscraper called The Spiracle, but proposals were abandoned following a downturn in the residential property market. Since 2010, the council have operated two surface car parks on the site.

Leeds City Plans Panel is set to meet to discuss the pre-application on Wednesday, May 19. No final decision on the plans will be made, and more detailed blueprints are expected to be submitted in the coming months.