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Sunday, July 21, 2019

New design for city office block

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Modifications have been made to the design for a new five-storey office block in the city centre.

Last month, plans were deferred, meaning they were sent back to the drawing board, and designers were asked to make alterations.

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Now, the building is set to come before city planners again at a meeting of Nottingham City Council’s planning committee at Loxley House next week.

Changes have been made to the glass frontage to the side of the building, bringing it closer to the front of the building. There have also been some technical changes to do with access.

The new block would sit between the Tesco Express on Station Street, and the Hopkinson building.

Just down the street, a new student block is currently being built where the old job centre used to be.

Liam Woodgates is the director of Hopkinson, an antiques and art shop right next to where the new building would go, which recently opened a tearoom and bar.

He said: “I’m a strong advocate of preserving older buildings, but I’ve been next door to the building for many years, and it’s in a pretty bad state so I think it does need to come down.

“I don’t think it is of any real heritage value.

“I know the last designs were knocked back, but I think modern architecture has its place, and I think it will be great for our business once it is done.

“I think it will actually make our building stand out more.”

A report produced for the planning committee said: “This item was deferred at planning committee on August 15 pending changes to the architecture and materials.

“Concerns were raised that the scheme did not enhance the conservation area and that further work was required to the elevation facing Station Street, with further consideration of the rear as well, particularly concerning material colour.

“Concern was also raised as to how vehicle movements to and from the site would be managed. Revisions that have been made to the proposed development since then.”

The report advises councillors to grant planning permission for the development.

Speaking about the previous designs during the last planning committee meeting in August, Councillor Michael Edwards, who represents the Bridge ward for Labour, said: “It has nothing to celebrate and it’s just not nice enough. It’s square, undecorated and ugly.

“When we think about what we are losing as well, if those buildings had been kept up to scratch they would be beautiful, it just begs the question why can’t we keep the frontage.

“We want something that is beautiful.”

The plans have been submitted by Franklin Ellis on behalf of Bildurn (Properties) Ltd.

The future of the building will be decided at the planning committee at Loxley House on Wednesday, September 19.

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