Liverpool puts brakes on Marybone student homes

Liverpool City Council has rejected plans by developer Bridgewater Services for a 190-bedroom student accommodation scheme in Marybone, against the recommendation of planning officers.

At its planning committee meeting on Tuesday 12 January, the council attended a site visit for the proposed project at 55-63 Great Crosshall Street before reaching a decision on the scheme.

The plot is made up of a grade two-listed former schoolhouse for St John’s Church, and the site of a warehouse which was demolished to make way for an earlier residential scheme which stalled in 2007 when the developer entered administration.

Bridgewater had proposed to convert the schoolhouse into flats and build a part five-, six- and eight-storey block to provide 193 student rooms, made up of 31 studios and 29 cluster units, designed by Falconer Chester Hall.

According to a spokesman for Bridgewater, the developer is planning to launch an immediate appeal against the council’s decision.

The scheme was rejected due to the majority of the planning committee agreeing with objections received from local residents and Councillors Nick Small, Sharon Sullivan and Christine Banks, stating that they considered “that Marybone has been overdeveloped with student accommodation”.

Despite the objections, planning officers recommended the scheme for approval, stating in a report ahead of the committee meeting that “whilst the head of planning recognises the different characteristics and lifestyles between students and other residential occupiers, in land use policy terms the Liverpool UDP does not differentiate between student and non-student living”.

A council spokesman said: “The planning committee carried out a site visit, heard from planning officers and local objectors and listened to the views of ward councillors before reaching a decision on this application. They believe that approval would have led to an over-concentration of student accommodation in this area which would have had a detrimental effect on local residents and therefore decided to turn it down.”

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“In land use policy terms the Liverpool UDP does not differentiate between student and non-student living”.

But in reality, there is a massive difference in the impact of the development on the area between “normal” residents and transient students. A human decision by members here?

By Uni

It will interesting to see how this site now develops, it has been empty for a long time now,
will it be just residential or a mixture…
I understand the residents objections to the large amount of new student builds so this is going to be an important departure from the City’s recent planning policies.
One concern is that it does not hinder investment in the City centre, if other communties follow suit.
So as we say “lets see what happens or not”

By Man on bicycle

I would hope the Liverpool UDP doesn’t “differentiate between student and non-student living” because it is automatically presumes any intelligent adult shouldn’t need to be told that transient 18 to 21 year old students have vastly different lifestiles which are extremely likely to adversely impact “non-student” members of an old, established, residential community.

This recommendation was a mistake to begin with and the committee made the right decision.

By LifeLongStudent

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