Urban Splash is a British company which regenerates decaying industrial warehouses, mills, Victorian terraced houses and other buildings. The company has its head office in Castlefield, Manchester, but works across the United Kingdom.
The company has won 316 awards to date for its work in transforming these scheme, 46 of which have been awarded by the RIBA, this is the most any developer has received from the institute. It is currently shortlisted for more awards including three from the Daily Telegraph British Homes Awards.
In September 2012 the company reported pre-tax losses of £9.3 million and debts of £234.4 million for the previous year. In 2014 Urban Splash was refinanced and restructured.
Established in 1993, the company has transformed disused buildings across the United Kingdom with schemes in cities including Castlefield, Chips and Ducie House in Manchester, Chimney Pot Park in Salford, Lister Mills in Bradford, Saxton in Leeds, Park Hill in Sheffield, The Vanilla and Tea Factories and The Matchworks in Liverpool, The Rotunda and Fort Dunlop in Birmingham, Lakeshore in Bristol, Stalybridge and Plymouth (Royal William Yard).
The success in transforming these projects has been documented in the press with articles on Chimney Pot Park in Salford in The Times. The Observer wrote about Park Hill: "The cleverly planned, well-dimensioned flats have been reinstated, but with bigger windows and greater openness than before. The streets in the sky are back".
Urban Splash also place emphasis on design, employing well respected architects such as Foster and Partners, ShedKM, Will Alsop, FAT Architects and Glenn Howells. In 2012, the company published a book documenting its relationship with architects and the schemes it had completed. The book was reviewed in The Times newspaper who said: "When it comes to rescuing the great industrial landmarks of the past, Urban Splash is in a class of its own".
Recent and ongoing developments at the company include two landmarks in Birmingham: The Rotunda and Fort Dunlop, the redevelopment of Morecambe's famous Art Deco Midland Hotel, which was completed in May 2008, Saxton in Leeds and its current major scheme at Park Hill in Sheffield, where it is working on the first phase of developing new homes and workspaces in the 1960s Grade II listed building.
In March 2010 it was announced by Urban Splash that they would be drawing up plans for an £80 million project to renovate the Pleasureland Southport site and construct an outdoor heated swimming pool, while expanding the marine lake and construct a winter garden, which will all be housed under a landmark atrium inspired by the Eden project. This development could form part of the 34-acre (140,000 m2) plot, which will be known as Southport Marine Park.
In 2012 Lakeshore's residents moved into the old tobacco factory in Bristol, a highly sustainable apartment complex. The apartments come complete with underfloor heating powered by a Biomass Boiler and a guide promoting sustainable living as part of the package. As of 19 February 2015, Urban Splash sold the freehold of the site to Adriatic Land 3 Limited.
In October 2013, Urban Splash sold one of their undeveloped acquisitions – the former Sunbeam motorcycle factory site, off the Penn Road island in Wolverhampton – which had been disused since 1999. Property developer and former rugby player Liam Wordley bought the site, traditionally known as Sunbeamland, with the intention to convert for residential use. Mr Wordley had previously regenerated the former Stafford Street drill hall in Wolverhampton into student accommodation. Planning consent for 115 homes was granted by Wolverhampton City Council in March 2014, including re-instatement of the famed Sunbeam lettering on the front of the building.
Urban Splash was founded by Tom Bloxham, a graduate of the University of Manchester, and Jonathan Falkingham, an architecture graduate from Liverpool University. Bloxham's initial business experience was selling pop posters in Affleck's Palace in Manchester. Bloxham branched out as a landlord opening the Northern Quarter Arcade adjacent to Affleck's Palace. He then expanded into Liverpool, opening a shopping arcade called the Liverpool Palace and then into licensed premises with the founding of the Baa Bar in Liverpool together with Falkingham.