PLANS to regenerate Coney Street and create a walkway along the River Ouse behind the street will not be affected by the council's failure to secure £10 million of levelling up funding, developers say.

Max Reeves, the development director at the Helmsley Group, which submitted its ambitious plans for 'Coney Street Riverside' in December, said the levelling up funding would have been used for 'public realm improvements outside our plans'.

"Although disappointing, the unsuccessful bid for levelling up funding will not affect plans for Coney Street Riverside," he said.

"We look forward to our vision for Coney Street Riverside being determined by City of York Council in due course, and hope that if approved, its successful delivery will be a driver for further public realm improvements in this area."

A council spokesperson also stressed that the riverside regeneration scheme was a 'private venture' that would be unaffected by the failure of the authority's 'supplementary' levelling up bid.

The Helmsley Group, which bought several properties in Coney Street - including numbers three to seven and no 19 as it prepared its ambitious plans for regeneration of the street - formally submitted a planning application in December.

It's plans include:

  • redevelopment of 19-33 Coney Street and 39 Coney Street to 2 Spurriergate to create a mixed-use retail, leisure, commercial and residential area, including purpose-built student accommodation and 'public realm' elements
  • 'rejuvenation' of the historic lanes and passageways joining Coney Street and the River Ouse
  • creation of a riverside walkway along the River Ouse behind Coney Street The company says on its website that the scheme would realise 'a 50-year ambition to reconnect York with the river' and would help to make 'the best city in the UK even better'.

York Press: Artist's impression of what a new riverside terrace/ walkway behind Coney Street might look likeArtist's impression of what a new riverside terrace/ walkway behind Coney Street might look like (Image: Planning documents/ supplied)

On its plans to regenerate Coney Street itself, the company's website says: "As one of York’s main thoroughfares, thousands of people walk along Coney Street every day.

"However, high streets across the UK are facing challenging times and despite Coney Street’s central location, there are a number of vacant and unloved buildings.

"Following a strategic programme of site assembly, we aim to sensitively redevelop Coney Street as the social heart of York city centre, home to high-quality and distinctive independent retailers, boasting a first-class food and beverage offer and providing visitors – local, national and international – with an engaging and vibrant experience throughout the day."

On its plans for a riverside walkway behind Coney Street, it adds: "The stretch of the River Ouse that runs parallel to Coney Street is currently inaccessible.

"Through the sensitive introduction of high-quality, contemporary architecture, our vision is to bring the riverfront to life, connecting people to this natural wonder, and making it accessible to all.

"We plan the creation of a riverside walkway which will rejuvenate the riverside, form new connections and transform it into a must-experience destination."

The York-based developer has been responsible for several major developments in the city, including the Old Fire Station and Merchant’s Exchange on the riverfront.

For more information on its Coney Street Riverside plans, visit