Currently in our 25th year in business, we have been delighted to play our part at Garness Jones in some of the region’s most prestigious and successful developments. We are looking back at a selection throughout the year.
Today: Fruit Market, Hull
In recent years, the Fruit Market and Marina area has perhaps quite justifiably become known as the heartbeat of Hull and the shining example of how the city can transform key areas into modern destinations to live, work and relax.
Now a bustling hive of activity with a mix of high-quality living spaces, restaurants, cafes retail and art venues, the former Fruit Market has come a long way since traders sold off their premises and moved to a purpose-built facility in Priory Park, Hessle in 2009.
Garness Jones Managing Director David Garness recalls being part of lengthy negotiations when representing traders over the sale of their properties which were to make way for the Humber Street and Fruit Market we have come to know today.
“The Fruit Market was a fantastic place to visit back in its day and many of the traders had been down there for decades themselves, whilst some of the family fruit businesses had been there for over a hundred years,” he said.
“It was a place steeped in history, and so for some the idea of moving away from there was not one they really wanted to entertain.
“The whole area had been earmarked for major redevelopment and regeneration, so that meant negotiating on behalf of the traders on the sale of their buildings.
“We made sure the traders received excellent offers for their buildings, many of which is has to be said were not in the best condition, and then we also advised them on the acquisition of the new facility at Priory Park.
“They were certainly interesting times and I can remember some very lively meetings, but we were very proud of how we managed that situation as kept the parties talking and negotiations progressing, ultimately seeing through deals which enabled all that is in place now to happen.”
Area transformed over five years as development led by Wykeland Beal
Following the sales of properties, a planned £100m regeneration scheme for Humber Street fell through as it became a victim to the global financial crash, and plans to build 400 new homes, restaurants, shops and offices fell by the wayside.
Ownership of the empty warehouses was finally transferred to Hull City Council and local partnership Wykeland Beal, who have spearheaded the multi-million pound redevelopment of the nine-acre site over the past five years in partnership with the authority and Fruit Market LLP.
The area has benefitted from the opening of independent shops, restaurants, bars and galleries, the ongoing growth of a new residential community, and development of a new technology and office hub with the C4Di buildings.
For Garness Jones the work has come full circle too, as the business now manages the residential aspect of the development for Wykeland Beal, ensuring it is well maintained across all communal areas and facilities, and that all issues impacting on the day-to-day experience of residents, such as lighting, refuse collection, servicing and general maintenance, are all in hand and managed effectively.
“It was really pleasing for us to be asked by Wykeland Beal to manage the residential aspect of the Fruit Market as it is one of the most prestigious developments of contemporary city living in Hull,” added Mr Garness.
“It is of course imperative that the experience of living in the Fruit Market lives up to the expectation of the residents, and so to be asked to uphold those standards was pleasing.
“It is also an area of the city which holds a lot of memories for us as a business. It is an area we have for many years passionately wanted to see flourish as it is now.
“In the days that the traders were being urged to move and create way for a fresh new vision for the area, our understanding of the market, our ability to negotiate successfully in difficult circumstances, and our commitment to reaching deals which were to the benefit of all parties - and the city - shone through.
“When I walk around the Fruit Market now I am proud of the work we did in the past, and today in supporting what has become a shining example of what can be achieved through ambition, vision and excellent execution.”
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