New visuals revealed as Cultural Heart takes shape

£210million plans to create a Cultural Heart in Huddersfield Town Centre are continuing to take shape with new artists’ impressions revealed.

Kirklees Council’s Scrutiny Panel is being updated on the progress of the Cultural Heart scheme on 3 March 2022 and will be shown early scheme designs of what the plans may look like.

The Cultural Heart is Kirklees Council’s plan to adapt to town centres being different in the future with more of a focus on culture, leisure, greater accessibility and more green and open spaces with flexible uses.

Our vision is for the Cultural Heart to be built around Queensgate Market and the existing library and art gallery buildings, with the Piazza Shopping Centre, proposed to be demolished.

View from King Street
View from Queensgate

The proposals include:

  • a new events/live music venue
  • food hall
  • museum and art gallery
  • new library
  • multi-storey car park

These are all centred around a new “Town Park”.

As part of an update presentation being delivered to Scrutiny Panel on 3 March 2022, the artist’s impressions reveal where on the site each building and use will be located. And give an indication of the proposed scale of new development around existing Listed buildings. These plans will be subject to change and development as the scheme continues to go through a briefing, design, consultation, and feasibility process.

  • The new event space is proposed to accommodate up to 2,200 people
  • The new museum and art gallery could be located within the existing library building. An extension could provide additional gallery space.
  • A new “Town Park” will include outdoor events space for around 3,000 people, and will link all of the elements together. The space will provide a green, inclusive and family friendly space for residents and visitors alike.
  • The new multi-storey car park will include electric vehicle charging points. It will provide convenient access to all the Cultural Heart and wider town centre has to offer.

Councillor Peter McBride, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, said:

“We’re now really speeding up the delivery of our exciting Cultural Heart plans with our engineers and architects appointed. These new visuals of the scheme, although subject to change along the design phase, really start to bring our visions to life.

“We want to continue to keep everyone updated as the vision continues to take shape as we know how excited people across Kirklees are. We’re now working towards July where we will be presenting something more detailed to Cabinet for approval.

“The Cultural Heart will offer people something truly unique with a hub of culture, events, activities, food and drink and more all in one place centred around a new Town Park. In order for our town centres to thrive in the modern day, we must adapt them so they offer people places to visit, things to do and more green space. Huddersfield’s Cultural Heart will do that and more.”

The Cultural Heart is part of the Huddersfield Blueprint. Our ten-year vision to create a thriving, modern-day town centre. That will be accessible, busy, inclusive, family-friendly, sustainable and a safe environment that will stay open longer.

Architects Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios and engineers Arup, were appointed in October 2021 to help deliver the Cultural Heart scheme. The scheme remains early in the design process and the proposals within these new visuals are subject to change as further design work progresses.

An Outline Business Case is being developed for The Cultural Heart it will be presented to Cabinet for approval in July 2022. At this stage, all elements of the programme including design, functionality and finances associated with capital and revenue will have been further assessed in detail. And their viability, and setting within the Cultural Heart master plan, tested.