Kirklees Council has revealed more details about the £210 million Cultural Heart and has published new artist’s impressions of how it might look.

The council plans to demolish the Piazza Centre and create a new events/live music venue, a food hall, a museum and art gallery, a new library and a new multi-storey car park, all centred around a new Town Park.

The latest plans reveal:

  • The new events venue 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 an outdoor events space for around 3,000 people. It will be ‘green’ and family-friendly;
  • The new multi-storey car park to replace the one demolished will include electric vehicle charging points.

The council is currently working on the plans with consultants, and councillors on the Economy and Neighbourhoods Scrutiny Panel will be updated at a meeting on Thursday March 3.

As part of a presentation to the panel, 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 view from Queensgate

Clr 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 view from King Street

The Cultural Heart is part of the Huddersfield Blueprint – Kirklees Council’s 10-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 now being developed for the Cultural Heart and will be presented to Cabinet in July 2022 for approval.

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.