Tomorrow (11th November), the council’s cabinet will discuss a triple-tracked approach to ensure action is taken to see the dilapidated Heath and Carby House buildings redeveloped.
Councillors will be asked to agree that the preferred course of action is to buy Heath and Carby House by agreement, but at the same time the case for using compulsory purchase powers is developed in case that is not possible, or they cannot be brought forward for development privately. If approved, a further more detailed report will come back to Cabinet and Council to make the formal resolution.
An outline planning application has also been submitted for a housing led scheme that could also include a small amount of flexible commercial and education space, along with room for a new doctors or dentistry practise. This follows the submission of an application to demolish, which would allow the buildings to be brought down quickly should a purchase be possible and mitigate the risks associated with the buildings.
Cllr Ron Woodley, Leader of the Council, says: “This report demonstrates the focus and commitment of the council and a real increase in pace to ensure these eyesore buildings are sorted out. Our approach means that we are covering all bases and can act quickly in any scenario.
“Discussions have been held with agents of these properties over a number of years to encourage development with offers being made and potential private transactions falling through. A revised offer has been made and a formal response is awaited.
“Our clear preference is to purchase these buildings by agreement if possible, but at the same time we are saying we will CPO if we cannot reach agreement and it becomes necessary.”
“In addition to these actions, outline and demolition applications have also been made to seek approval for the principle of a mixed use development and ensure the buildings can be demolished quickly should be able to buy the buildings.”
Separate applications for the demolition of Heath House and Carby House and the redevelopment of the land have been submitted by the Council .
The outline application includes:
- Good quality residential, not exceeding 7 storeys, with appropriate parking and amenity space.
- Some flexible commercial elements of between c. 200 and 300sqm for possibly a nursery/gym/small retail/office/community use.
- Some flexible education provision to meet possible town centre demand with an option for this to be used for residential or commercial use if not required for education.
- c.200sqm for a GP surgery/dentist or similar