Nine-flat plan for vacant Crewe town centre building approved

The premises will be transformed into nine apartments with a new retail unit on the ground floor

Plans to turn a former youth services hub in Crewe into nine flats and a commercial outlet have been given the go-ahead. Cheshire East Council confirmed that the proposal for the building on Market Street could go ahead on Thursday (May 12).

Applicant Sencap put forward the scheme earlier this year asking the authority for prior approval to change the use of the site from offices to mix-use ‘to include nine apartments and a commercial unit at ground floor’.

The ground floor reception area would be where the commercial unit is based. The rear section of the floor would be converted into an apartment along with space for bins and bike storage.

There would then be four apartments and a communal lounge area on the first floor. The last four flats would then be created, along with another lounge area, on the second floor.

The decision to grant the plans prior approval came despite concerns raised by Crewe Town Council. Members objected to the scheme for a number of reasons including overdevelopment of the site.

They claimed ‘fewer but larger’ units would be more suitable. They also said it would ‘represent in effect the development of an HMO (house of multiple occupancy)’.

The property used to be Cheshire East Council’s Youth Support Services hub before it closed permanently during the first lockdown in 2020. Sencap has been instructed it needs to meet a number of conditions before starting development ‘in relation to noise impacts to protect the amenity of the future occupiers and implementation of the bin and cycle storage provision’.

The planning officer’s report read: “Whilst it is noted that the apartments do not have any outdoor amenity space the site is located within walking distance of public open space, and given the town Centre location this is not unusual.

“The site is also located within the Crewe Town Centre primary shopping frontage, however the development would comply with the policy in that it would retain a commercial unit at ground floor level within the shopping frontage area.

“Most of the issues raised by Crewe Town Council and representations raised above have been addressed within the assessment, except those which are not relevant to a prior notification application. The development will be subject to other legislation such as Building Regulations etc.”

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