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Councillors advised to approve flat proposal for former Travis Perkins site in Newtown

COUNCILLORS have been advised to approve plans for eight one bedroom flats at the former Travis Perkins builder’s merchant site in Newtown.

The planning application for the apartments by Harry Bowen of Mid Wales Property Limited, is to replace a block of six terrace buildings which would have provided a mix of three and four bedroom homes at the site.

The terrace buildings along with 32 apartments were given planning permission in February 2022.

Travis Perkins closed their branch there in 2020 as part of a company wide restructure to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.
The proposal will be discussed by the Planning committee after Powys County Councillor for the area, Joy Jones called in the application due to concerns about car parking.

Cllr Joy Jones

Cllr Jones said: “I am very concerned regarding the amount of accommodation compared to the parking provided onsite.
“There are already issues with parking on New Road.
“With all the other properties that are already going to be built on the development there will end up being a real parking issue that will impact the surrounding properties.”

Senior planning officer Kate Bowen explained, that car parking and highway issues had been addressed within a number of “discharge” planning applications that show the developers have complied with conditions placed on the planning permission, that needed to be agreed before building work can start.

Ms Bowen said: “The highway authority did not object to the previous application.
“The relevant condition was discharged following advice received from the highway authority.
Ms Bowen explained that the number of parking bays for the whole development is now 40 which she said is “adequate for the overall site.”

Figures from the council’s housing department for December show that the actual need in Newtown is for homes with two bedrooms or more.

Of the households registered in need for housing with Newtown as their first choice, 146 asked for one bedroom accommodation, 202 for two bedrooms, 49 for three. 26 for four and 10 for five bedrooms and above.

Ms Bowen said: “It is noted that housing need for two-bedroom units is higher than one bedroom units, nevertheless, it is recognised that the development is being constructed for a registered social landlord which hold their own register and as such have identified a need for the development.”

Ms Bowen recommended that councillors approve the application.

Ms Bowen said said: “Given that residential development has previously been accepted and that the development is located on a brownfield site in a sustainable location in  Newtown, the principle of the development is considered acceptable and in accordance  the Local Development Plan (LDP).”