Student accommodation plan wins appeal

by Natalie Vincent Fri 31 August 2018, 2:31 pm

A student accommodation building at East Street near Reading town centre will now be built after getting the go-ahead from the Planning Inspector.

Planning Inspector Simon Warder's decision to allow an appeal last month (August) for the Barton Willmore scheme, comes after Reading Council's planning committee rejected the development in June 2017.

The proposed four-storey development will feature a mix of studio and one-bedroom apartments, with communal space. A total of 103 units are planned will involve the redevelopment of a redundant car park within one of Reading's conservation areas to the south west of the town centre.

Reading Council argued the building would fail to preserve the character and appearance of the Market Street/London Street Conservation Area. Barton Willmore submitted the appeal on behalf of contractor Studious Construction after discussions with the council to highlight the scheme’s merits failed.

Barton Willmore's senior planner, Craig Pettit, said the decision highlights long-term benefits for the town.

He added: "[It will] free up existing housing stock by alleviating the prevalence of houses in multiple occupations, the additional expenditure by students in the town and delivering much-needed accommodation for students."

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