Studio KMA wins consent for Wigan assisted living

Studio KMA has secured planning consent for a 43-unit assisted living scheme in Wigan, although the architect’s director said an enforced restriction on the building’s height was “a missed opportunity” for the site.

The architect has won planning approval for client Hilldale Housing Association for the 0.6-acre site on Worsley Terrace, just off Standishgate in Wigan. The project was approved under delegated powers.

The site is currently occupied by the four-and-a-half storey Gateway House office building and another two-and-a-half storey office, both of which will be demolished to make way for the four-storey scheme.

It will include 27 one-bed apartments for later life living, and 16 studio flats for those living with dementia. There will also be communal facilities, a kitchen, dining area, and a courtyard.

Andy Titterton, director and founder of Studio KMA said: “The existing site is within a conservation area and in need of urgent regeneration. Whilst our initial concept design pushed boundaries, an enforced restriction on height of the building fronting Standishgate resulted in a missed opportunity for Wigan, in our view. That said, we look forward to successfully progressing our concept in other areas of Greater Manchester with the support of the Greater Manchester Mayor.”

He added Studio KMA would be looking to rolling out the design throughout the North West “over the next five to 10 years” with further announcements expected “in the coming months”.

Hilldale Housing Association is likely to operate the facility once it completes and although a main contractor is yet to be appointed, work is due to start in the summer. As well as designing the project, Studio KMA also acted as planner, and was supported by civil and structural engineer Struktura.

Dan Anders at Hilldale Housing Association said: “Whilst the design of our original proposal for Wigan changed somewhat through the planning process, we still perceive that the agreed concept pushes boundaries in later life living and dementia care design. Studio KMA’s insightful approach has given us a great scheme and we’re excited to start on site in the coming months.”

Studio KMA has 10 projects with Hilldale, including a scheme at Formby Hall in Wigan, which is due to start on site next month.

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