Plans by Forshaw Land & Property to bring more than 250 homes to Bolton are set for the green light at Bolton’s planning committee this week.
In February, Forshaw revealed its £35m plans for the Hattrell DS One-designed development at the north western edge of the town centre, a gateway scheme that now comprises three apartment buildings offering 258 one and two-bedroom apartments and duplexes, along with four three-storey townhouses.
Plot A, between St George’s Road and Back Bark Street, will house 114 dwellings consisting of 50 one-bed units, 59 two-bed units, 3 two-bed duplex units and 2 three-bed units – this element of the development would present its main elevation to St Georges Road and will be mainly eight storeys tall, rising to 10 storeys at the corner of St George’s Road and Pool Street.
The ground floor would be used for non-residential uses, most likely a small convenience store and a class A2 professional services occupier together with a private cinema for use by residents.
Plot B, between Back Bark Street and Bark Street, will house 76 units consisting of 30 one-bed units and 46 two-bed units and will also be eight storeys high.
The third plot, Plot C, occupies land between Bark Street and St Helena Road and will house 68 dwellings consisting of 32 one-bed units and 36 two-bed units This element of the development would present its main elevation to Bark Street, facing north and will again be eight storeys high. The townhouses will also be between Bark Street and St Helena Road.
The remainder of the site, sloping down to St Helena Road, will provide parking for all three elements, with a total of 42 parking spaces.
Two buildings are to be demolished to facilitate the development: 109 to 111 St George’s Road, last occupied by the Shimuls Indian restaurant; and 113-123 St George’s Road, last occupied by Hardman & McManus Funeral Services. The substation on the site will remain.
Although the site sits close to the listed St Helena Mill, it is outside the St George’s conservation area. It does however lie within the Croal Valley intervention zone as identified in Bolton’s town centre masterplan, where the council is committed to supporting development, especially large-scale residential.
Several large-scale projects are currently moving ahead in the town, including Muse’s Church Wharf and a 20-storey tower proposed by Midia. As part of the project, the developer has stated its intention to contribute to a pedestrian thoroughfare linking Chorley New Road to the town centre.
The planning officers’ report concludes: “The three main blocks that form this development are substantial in scale; however, officers are satisfied that the site and the locality can accommodate a development of the height and massing proposed without detriment.
“Sufficient progress has been made on the elevational design to ensure that the buildings will have an appropriate degree of distinctiveness relative to the prominent gateway location. The fact that the provision of this number of new homes over a relatively short period would make a significant and positive contribution to the council’s housing requirement should be given significant weight in any decision and will provide a local customer base for town centre shops and services.”