Case Studies

Council Selects Preferred Development Partners to Transform Derby City Centre

12 February 2024

Plans to regenerate the city have taken a big leap forward with Derby City Council announcing a partnership made up of VINCI Developments UK and ION Developments as their preferred strategic development partners.

In early 2023, the council announced its intention to work with an experienced development partner to create a cohesive masterplan for the regeneration of several important city centre locations. Following an expression of interest process and procurement exercise through our Developer Led Framework, VINCI and ION have been invited to develop more detailed plans for the cultural heart of the city.

Over the coming months the partnership will work collaboratively with the council, local businesses and community stakeholders to develop their vision and design for the regeneration of the city centre. Initial plans, include a revitalised cultural quarter which will offer a range of leisure, commercial and community facilities, connected to a new business and residential district, incorporating the Bold Lane area and Northern Quarter.

Within the proposed plans is a new cultural, commercial, and creative public space, which will be located on the site of the former Assembly Rooms. The multi-functional building will have spaces for meeting, working, and creating above restaurant and commercial space, to enhance the city centre offer.

The plans are set in a redesigned and enhanced Market Place, which will become a focal point for the city and will create new and improved green spaces, including ‘pocket parks’ to support relaxation and wellbeing.

The scheme also aims to create ‘green and blue corridors’ to improve connectivity between open spaces, such as Cathedral Green and the River Derwent and encourage more active travel across the city centre to underline the city’s net zero ambitions.

Both firms have extensive experience in long-term regeneration and place management projects in collaboration with local authorities. The partnership will combine the extensive innovation, insight and experience of VINCI and ION, with the council’s vision and understanding of the needs of the city.


Jonathan Parker, Development Director, Pagabo, said: “We’re delighted to see such an influential regeneration scheme getting underway with help from our specialist Developer Led Framework, to support Derby City Council’s ambitious plans, following a further competition process. The scheme will take place over various sites in the city centre and promises to bring huge benefits to the local community. We can’t wait to follow the scheme as it progresses.”


Councillor Nadine Peatfield, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for City Centre, Regeneration, Culture and Tourism, said: “Derby is a city of growth and economic significance, representing a regional economy of around £15bn, but despite all this our city centre does not reflect our status as an industry leader. We’re on a journey to transform Derby into a vibrant city centre with culture at its heart, creating a go-to destination which not only attracts visitors from outside of the city but also offers an affordable place for our citizens to enjoy.

“Attracting potential strategic development partners such as VINCI and ION is a huge step forward in bringing this ambitious vision to life. Both VINCI and ION hold a wealth of knowledge and experience and we’re very much looking forward to working with them on plans for our city centre’s exciting future.”


Steve Parry, Managing Director of ION Developments, said: “We are delighted to be selected alongside VINCI Developments to work up these exciting plans for Derby City Council and the people and businesses of Derby. Together, we will use our extensive experience to create a thriving city centre location that offers a blend of cultural, community, and commercial space to meet Derby’s needs, both now and long into the future.”

Graham Lambert, Managing Director of VINCI UK Developments, said: “Derby as a city has much to offer and potential to be harnessed. We share the ambition of the Council, the local community and businesses, in seeking to revitalise the cultural core of the city. The Council has laid the foundation for this, and we will create community led assets, flexible and diverse spaces and a quality business district that compliments the inward investment in the city. We are proud to be chosen by the Council as partner for this important strategic project and look forward to working collaboratively with the Council and local stakeholders.”


Avison Young have worked alongside the council in a strategic property advisory role as well as supporting the procurement process, which was completed through our Developer Led Framework.


Laura Loftus, Director and Contract Lead, Avison Young said: “We are delighted to have supported the Council in developing the brief and the procurement process for this project. VINCI and ION have clearly demonstrated their ambition on the scale and pace of the development, and their track record in sustainable regeneration provides a clear indication that the Council’s objectives and ambitions can be met through a series of well-planned developments which frame the future revitalisation of the City Centre.”

VINCI and ION will now work closely with the council, local businesses and community stakeholders over the next six months to develop their vision and submit their plans for the city centre.


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