PLANS for 19 new apartments in Caia Park on the site of a former community centre look set to be given the go-ahead.
Wrexham Council’s planning committee will decide on proposals for the three-storey development where the Kingsley Circle Community Centre once stood in Wrexham’s largest housing estate.
The centre has been demolished under previous planning permission.
A planning officer report for councillors to read ahead of the meeting says the development would enhance the appearance of the site and provide 15 parking spaces.
It says: “The building would be 10 metres high where it would be closest to Eaton Drive, rising up to 12 metres high with apartments on three floors (ground, first and second floors).
“Whilst the building would be taller than the dwellings on Eaton Drive, the land slopes upwards to the north/rear of the site mean, with dwellings in the wider locality built on higher ground.
“The development would therefore not appear unduly prominent and would sit comfortably within the street scene.”
The report adds: “The building would be finished in a mix of brick, render and timber effect cladding. Existing dwellings display a mix of different materials therefore the development is in keeping to the character of the area.”
Open space to the north of the site has been included in an ongoing project of environmental improvements. It is planned to use the open space to create a circular perennial wildflower meadow.
But there have been a handful of objections to the plans ranging from potential overlooking of surrounding properties leading to a loss of privacy to concern that development of this kind could lead to crime and antisocial behaviour, along with a preference for bungalows on the site.
However, planning officers have deemed the development acceptable and advised that it be approved.
If it is granted, it would bring to an end any uncertainty over the site’s future since the community centre was closed in 2014 in a round of Wrexham Council cuts.
Initially Caia Park Environmental Group were keen to take on the centre while Wrexham University explored the option of funding the facility with a view to using it as a base from which to build its community youth development work.
But that takeover fell through in late 2014, with the university confirming that while it had examined the possibilities of taking on the centre, it had decided not to pursue the venture.
At the time Wrexham Council had approached community councils to take over the running of community centres as part of an attempt to find savings totalling £45 million.
Caia Park Community Council looked into whether they could support community groups looking to keep both the Pentre Gwyn and Kingsley Circle Community Centres open but were unable to afford both. Members opted to support the Pentre Gwyn Centre.
Permission to demolish the Kingsley Circle Community Centre was granted in 2021.
Wrexham Council’s planning committee will decide on the application for apartments there when it meets on Monday (November 6).