More calls for action over Kwik Save site blighting Gloucester
POLITICAL pressure is mounting on builders to redevelop an eyesore which has stood empty for 11 years.
After the Kwik Save superemarket shut for good in August 2002 it was snapped up for redevelopment as flats in 2004 – but it has stood empty ever since.
After businesses pleaded through the Gloucester Citizen last month for building work to start calls have been made by politicians to get it moving too.
Developer Newland Homes said it is considering a different plan to the one which won planning permission three years ago.
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Liberal Democrat city councillors Sebastian Field and Jeremy Hilton have written to the leader of Gloucester City Council seeking a meeting with the developers about why this crucial city centre new homes project has not started.
Deputy group leader Mr Field (Kingsholm and Wotton) said: "We need new homes in Gloucester and this is a brownfield site with permission for 119 residential apartments. I urge the developers to start construction work."
Newland Homes won planning permission for 98 flats in 2007, renewed permission in 2010, then changed the plans in 2011 for 119 flats, including more affordable properties.
Those plans were put on hold last year and they were subsequently shelved.
A previous scheme had won planning permission in 2005 but later stalled.
Newland Homes is in the early stages of working on a new scheme comprising flats, cottages and mews.
No work has taken place on the site bounded by Northgate Street, Black Dog Way and Worcester Street.
While weeds grow on the site, safety fences have gone up around part of it and it is used to carry advertising hoardings for other Newland Homes developments.
City council Liberal Democrat group leader Mr Hilton said the time has come to get a scheme moving.
"It is now years since planning permission for 119 apartments was granted and eight years since a previous permission for 88 units was approved," said Mr Hilton (Kingsholm and Wotton).
"This site is an eyesore in the centre of Gloucester. Construction must start soon before the permission expires."
He said full planning permission was approved on September 7, 2010 and it runs out on October 15, 2015.
City council leader Paul James (C, Longlevens) said: "I agree that this is an important site and I am very keen to see it developed."
Newland Homes design director Jeremy Drew said moving away from flats would be less viable. He said: "We are having discussions now with councillors and with the Local Enterprise Partnership to see what options there may be to make this scheme work."