Broadford Works demolition approval paves way for £100m urban village plans
Plans to demolish a key element of Aberdeen’s historic Grade A-listed Broadford Works complex to make way for a £100 million ‘urban village’ have been approved by the city’s planning development management committee.
Councillors approved recommendations from planners for the demolition of the Grey Mill building including the Old Mill, and the South Mill with the exception of the south gable wall.
Built in 1808, the four storey structure holds the accolade of being the fourth oldest iron framed building in the world and the oldest in Scotland.
Developer Inhabit plans to transform the former textile factory into 460 homes and accommodation for 430 students. The ‘urban village’ will also include commercial office space, shops, restaurants and cafes set in a landscaped environment.
Councillors were told that the demolition is necessary as it would be too costly and unsafe to retain it as it currently stands.
A report compiled by the Hurd Rolland Partnership after a visit in 2016 says that fully retaining the buildings would cost upwards of £11.5m, while demolition would cost around £1.1m.
One of the conditions attached to the application is that no demolition should take place until the works preceding demolition have been completed and a detailed construction programme submitted of the first six months of work.
Committee convener Marie Boulton said officers had worked hard to find ways to retain the mill.
She added: “It is sad that it has to be demolished but the developers have been clear that the whole project would be unviable without it.
“There were fires set there and people breaking into the site so I think, without this plan, we could have had the loss of all the buildings.”
A spokeswoman for Inhabit said: “We are delighted that Aberdeen city councillors have unanimously supported our plans for the regeneration of the historic Broadford Works site.
“The redevelopment will support the city’s long-term growth by delivering a high quality, mixed-use development that sits alongside the Aberdeen City Centre Masterplan.
“We look forward to progressing the next phase of development on this important site.”