Key route into Winchester is set for "landmark building"

Hampshire Chronicle: The city's housing chief, Ian Tait, has praised the plans The city's housing chief, Ian Tait, has praised the plans

NEW homes on a key route into Winchester will be a “landmark building”, the city's housing boss has said.

Despite advice from council officers to reject the plans, city councillors approved 14 new homes for the former Peugeot garage on Southgate Street.

Addressing the planning committee last Thursday (February 7), Ian Tait, portfolio holder for new homes delivery, said: “What a remarkable and significant site this is. The building at the front will be a landmark building.”

The 2,700sq metre site comprises several commercial premises, including a Peugeot garage and a furniture store.

It also includes a former 19th century coach house which will be converted into two family homes, while a new four-storey building will provide nine flats, alongside a newly-built terrace of three four-bedroom houses.

Planning officers argued that demolition of commercial buildings in favour of new homes would clash with council policy, which holds that the number of employment opportunities on such sites should be retained or increased.

But Cllr Barry Lipscomb, said: “This site cries out for development. It's one of the main arteries to the city, the gateway.

“We need to be prepared to move away from our policies on occasions when we need to and I think this is one of those occasions.”

Councillor Michael Read agreed: “With regard to the loss employment, it's minimal. The amount of staff they kept was probably no more than 20 or 25 at its peak,” he said.

Cllr Therese Evans backed the plans but was unhappy at the lack of affordable housing, although officers said developers were under no obligation because the plans - at just 14 homes - did not meet the number required to trigger the affordable homes requirement.

Cllr Evans also expressed sympathy for nearby homeowners. She said: “I do feel sorry for the occupants of Southgate Villas but there's nothing to say that a commercial development wouldn't result in some loss of light. Inevitably if you live in a city and there is a big space behind you, it's going to be developed eventually, although that's no comfort to the occupants, I know.”

The meeting also heard that there had been inquiries about the site from businesses, including one from McDonalds and one from a convenience store, though they were held to be no more than tentative expressions of interest.

Developer Bargate Homes can now press ahead after councillors voted unanimously in favour.

Only Cllr Lipscomb abstained on the grounds that he could not “throw the occupants of the neighbouring properties to the wolves just because we think it's a commendable design.”

Comments (5)

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7:48pm Tue 12 Feb 13

Winchester Soul says...

Why are these clowns going against council policy??

Egotistical, the lot of them.
Why are these clowns going against council policy?? Egotistical, the lot of them. Winchester Soul

10:17pm Tue 12 Feb 13

iantait says...

I do so love going to the circus and it's always nice to see Winchester Soul performing there, that red nose really does hide their gout but I think they may be imbibing just a little too much sherry at the moment.
I do so love going to the circus and it's always nice to see Winchester Soul performing there, that red nose really does hide their gout but I think they may be imbibing just a little too much sherry at the moment. iantait

6:57pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Winchester Soul says...

iantait wrote:
I do so love going to the circus and it's always nice to see Winchester Soul performing there, that red nose really does hide their gout but I think they may be imbibing just a little too much sherry at the moment.
laugh? I thought I'd never start.........

Always nice to hook a councillor after very little fishing, but as I said - egotistical!
[quote][p][bold]iantait[/bold] wrote: I do so love going to the circus and it's always nice to see Winchester Soul performing there, that red nose really does hide their gout but I think they may be imbibing just a little too much sherry at the moment.[/p][/quote]laugh? I thought I'd never start......... Always nice to hook a councillor after very little fishing, but as I said - egotistical! Winchester Soul

7:50pm Wed 13 Feb 13

iantait says...

so clowns go fishing too, how very interesting, oh by the way what does egotistical mean, it's not a word I use very often
so clowns go fishing too, how very interesting, oh by the way what does egotistical mean, it's not a word I use very often iantait

9:11am Sun 17 Feb 13

cardinalfang says...

Not surprising to see some twisted logic from councilors there. Just because the site used to employ only a few people doesn't mean that a future business wouldn't employ more if it were the right one.

As for being a landmark, what on earth does that mean? So the houses have to be ceremonial in style? Have councilors names embossed on them? More meaningless management speak from people who haven't created any wealth or real employment in their lives.

All the statements reek of self-importance and inflated opinions, yet with no care for the people who pay their salaries.
Not surprising to see some twisted logic from councilors there. Just because the site used to employ only a few people doesn't mean that a future business wouldn't employ more if it were the right one. As for being a landmark, what on earth does that mean? So the houses have to be ceremonial in style? Have councilors names embossed on them? More meaningless management speak from people who haven't created any wealth or real employment in their lives. All the statements reek of self-importance and inflated opinions, yet with no care for the people who pay their salaries. cardinalfang

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