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Massive £100m Worcester revamp set for approval
AMBITIOUS plans for the biggest regeneration project Worcester has ever seen have been recommended for approval, it has emerged.
Worcester City Council will make a decision over the £100 million homes and leisure complex off Sherriff Street next week - with planners suggesting it get the go-ahead.
The exciting scheme includes over 600 new homes, an 80-bed care village, hotel, ice skating rink, cinema, a gym, bowling alley, business and retail units, play facilities, 1,000 parking spaces and more.
A report has now been prepared for a planning committee meeting next Thursday, with planning officers recommending it be accepted.
The full scheme will span 900,000 sq ft - almost five times as big as the £75m St Martin’s Quarter development in Lowesmoor.
The report, which has now been published, calls the site “a gateway into the city” and labels it an “ambitious” attempt to revamp the largely derelict site.
It also says such is the complexity of the project, that if the committee vote it through it will need to be sent to local government minister Eric Pickles to be signed off.
The report says planning officers do not believe it will detract from the city centre because many elements of the retail are new, like the ice skating rink.
Paul O’Connor, Worcester’s planning chief, said: ““The scale of the scheme is different to a number of recent developments in the city but forms, along with St Martin’s Quarter, the first of the sites from our masterplan area to come through the planning process.”
Because the development is so vast, the work is being done in three separate phases, with a completion date of 2017.
Next Thursday the committee will be asked to approve a final application for phase one, which includes 131 apartments and a 597 space multi-storey car park.
They will also be asked to approve phases two and three in outline detail only - effectively backing the principle of the rest of the development.
A spokesman for developers Sherriff’s Gate Ltd said: “We’d personally like to thank the planners and the highways team at County Hall who have worked very hard to get it to this point.
“We are extremely grateful to everyone that has worked on the project, including Glazzard Architects and our planning consultants, Gregory Gray Associates - they have all supported us in bringing this to fruition.”
Sanctuary Housing is being lined up to take over the accommodation and will make sure it provides for all needs – from affordable homes to student accommodation, private rents, shared ownership and ‘key workers’, like nurses.
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