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Derelict Jewellery Quarter site poised for residential overhaul

Vacant plot was once going to house a £15 million college campus but is now on market for housing

20-21 Legge Lane, the site of a planned food school which is now being marketed for residential development

A derelict site once mooted to be the home of a new £15 million university building could become the latest residential development scheme in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter.

Birmingham College of Food, Tourism & Creative Studies put forward proposals for the site at 20-21 Legge Lane in 2007, shortly before it became University College Birmingham (UCB).

It enlisted architecture firm Glancy Nicholls to design a new 75,000 sq ft, four-storey food campus with teaching rooms, practical areas, library, kitchen, restaurant and underground car park, due for completion in 2011.

But the project never took off and UCB has since gone on to redevelop a plot of land in nearby Charlotte Street.

The Birmingham office of property consultancy Knight Frank is now marketing the site with discussions already at an advanced stage with potential developers.

If given the go ahead, the project would become the latest in a long line of property developments in the city's historic manufacturing quarter which is undergoing a speedy renascence as an 'urban village' for young professionals coming to the city.

The former Swan Kettles factory , in Icknield Street, is to house 550 apartments, the former W Reeves Badges plant, in Tenby Street, has been turned into seven townhouses, office space and a penthouse and serviced apartment company Staycity is due to open a new £17 million, 170-unit hotel next year.

Knight Frank senior surveyor Will Jordan told the Post: "It's not clear at this stage whether the existing buildings will have to stay or not as they are not listed but they do fall within a conservation area and the council is keen to see them remain in place.

"It's too early to say what the make up of the site will be and how many houses and apartments will be built - this is is something which will have to be decided between developers and the planners."

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