Wirral Council is understood to be in discussion with three partnerships to deliver its £1bn waterfront regeneration plan; Muse with Morgan Sindall, Scarborough with BCEGI, and Ion with Keepmoat.

The council launched the tender notice for the project at MIPIM in Cannes this year, outlining the potential to deliver a mixture of residential, leisure, commercial and cultural development in the three areas of Hamilton Square, Woodside and Birkenhead town centre, where there would be a new business district.

The project is targeting 42 sites, with an initial tranche of 12 expected to move forwards in the next year, with planning applications and starts on site.

Speaking to Place North West, council chief executive Eric Robinson said that the Wirral Growth Company joint venture partner would be announced in the next three months, and said the council was in talks with “big and serious players” but would not be drawn on specific names.

However a source close to the project said that three partnerships had been moved to the final stage of bidding.

Muse is repeatedly connected to large town regeneration projects, with schemes in Macclesfield, Stockport, Blackpool, and has been linked with emerging plans for Bolton and Oldham.

Scarborough Group and Chinese contractor BCEGI are delivering the £700m Middlewood Locks in Salford, and a win in Wirral would represent BCEGI’s first project outside Manchester.

GVA and Bevan Brittan advise Wirral Council. The council declined to comment on market speculation.

Source: Jessica Middleton-Pugh, North West Place, 19 October 2017