Friday, August 11, 2017

News: Corporation Street apartment plans

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Pre-application discussions are underway again regarding a potential housing development on the site of burnt-out buildings on Corporation Street in Rotherham town centre.

The latest proposal is for an apartment block containing 64 flats - a mix of studios, 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom units.

In June, Rothbiz reported that Rotherham Council was preparing a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) to buy the site and finally deal with the eyesores following the publication of the town centre masterplan.

The authority explained how a CPO would be a last resort having failed to engage with the absentee owners of 3-7 Corporation Street despite numerous attempts.

The former Envy nightclub building, which suffered a malicious fire in 2007, and Muskaan restaurant, which was closed after a fire in 2011, have been left empty ever since, and whilst not structurally unsafe, the buildings are widely acknowledged to be an eyesore.

On a key route, the masterplan states that the buildings "create a very poor impression of the town and undermine confidence in the town centre.

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Now plans have been submitted to the council's planning department setting out the proposal and precedents for demolishing the buildings and replacing them with 64 apartments.

The current proposals follow the principles of the scheme established during previous pre-application discussions in 2014. One change is the removal of retail space on the ground floor.

The latest application has been submitted via the architects for the project - Den Architecture in Leeds. The developer behind the proposals is not clear but Rothbiz understands that the application is linked to Alkush Choudhury and Rothgen Ltd, the company behind the £25m hotel and leisure resort at Tyram Lakes in Doncaster.

The pre-application report for the proposed residential development on Corporation Street shows a building of different heights up to five stories high.

Paid pre-planning advice from council officers helps applicants decide whether planning permission is required and if it is likely permission would be granted.

The Council had hoped to acquire the site in order to ensure that it would be redeveloped. It said it would look to procure a development partner to bring the site forward and that a brief, setting out the broad proposal for the site and desired outputs, would help to procure a developer partner by the end of 2017. If a purchase of the properties by mutual agreement with the current owners is not concluded then the CPO process will commence in early 2018.

The Rotherham town centre masterplan places a greater emphasis on town centre living and leisure, as opposed to traditional retail uses, in continuing the regeneration of Rotherham town centre. The Council is set to use land that it owns as "go-early" sites to kickstart housebuilding in the town centre.

Images: Den Architecture


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