Plans to convert Northampton office block into flats gets green light... but councillor fears 'huge' parking problem

"Bringing more cars to the area is going to be horrendous."

Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 8:16 am
Updated Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 8:18 am
The building has been given the green light to turn into flats. Photo: Google

Plans to turn a Northampton office block into flats have been given the green light - but the area's local councillor has said it is going to cause a 'huge problem'.

Prior approval has been granted by West Northamptonshire Council to turn offices on the corner of Sandhills Road and Harlestone Road, St James, into 14 flats which will be comprised of 11 one-bed and three two bed homes.

The main issue raised during the planning process was around parking.

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The site was previously an office building for Scott Fowlers LLP, which used to have 35-45 employees and only 10 parking bays. These bays will be kept for the tenants. Those without a space may need to apply for a parking permit for the area.

Planning papers say: "The impact of the proposed 14 residential dwellings will have a minimal affect on the surrounding area. With the proposed number of apartments and retained parking bays there will be no material effect on highway grounds."

However, councillor Rufia Ashraf disagrees and believes the development will exacerbate the highways issues in the area.

Cllr Ashraf said: "We already have a huge problem with parking on that street. Bringing more cars to the area is going to be horrendous.

"We are literally going to be at a stand still. The stretch of road between Aldi and Iceland traffic lights gets blocked all the time.

"I am all for development, all for housing, but at this stage it's difficult for people moving into the area who bring cars when there isn't enough parking already for people here.

"The building does have some parking space but it's going to be a huge problem."

Before being an office block, the site was a Pentecostal Church.