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58 affordable apartments planned for centre of Blackwood

Artist impression of the proposed apartments in Market Place car park, Blackwood (Pic: C2J Architects)

A HOUSING developer plans to build 58 affordable apartments in the centre of Blackwood.

GHR Developments wants to turn part of a privately-owned pay-and-display car park in Market Place into a mixture of one- and two-bedroom apartments.

Joe Ayoubkhani, an agent for the applicant, said the development, if approved, will bring much-needed affordable housing to the town.

“There is a significant need for affordable housing in Blackwood, and the redevelopment of this car park presents an excellent opportunity to meet this need – being sustainably located in the town centre,” said Mr Ayoubkhani of Highlight Planning.

The apartments will be “within walking distance” of local healthcare, education and leisure services, as well as Blackwood’s shops, he added.

The proposals for Market Place comprise 40 one-bedroom and 18 two-bedroom apartments across two buildings.

A central communal garden space will “provide a sense of place” and residents will have 28 parking spaces and ample bike storage, Mr Ayoubkhani said in a planning statement.

Some of the existing parking spaces in Market Place will be retained for customers of nearby businesses, he added.

GHR Developments has now lodged a full application for planning permission after completing a pre-planning consultation exercise earlier this year.

A report shows the applicant amended several details of the original proposals following local concerns.

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Fears of the apartments overlooking other properties have resulted in an “amendment to the upper floor plans”, and all balconies “have been removed” from the proposals.

The application also drew some positive comments during the pre-planning exercise – including that “having more people in the town will be good for Blackwood”, and that “rented affordable housing is positive”.

The Market Place car park redevelopment application is now out for consultation, and can be viewed on the Caerphilly County Borough Council website under reference 24/0308/FULL.