A former cinema could be converted into dozens of new flats under plans for a ‘comprehensive redevelopment’ of the building. Based in Stockport town centre, it has more recently been home to fashion brand Peacocks and is currently in use as a large charity shop.
Dating back to the early 20th century, it was remodeled as a department store in the mid-1960s. But now plans for a complete overhaul of the Princes Street building have been brought forward by Bramhall-based Kippax Investments Ltd.
The firm is seeking outline planning permission for a ‘mixed use’ development that would ‘retain and improve’ the ground floor retail space, while 33 one and two-bed apartments would be built above and around it. Two of the homes are proposed to be ‘affordable’.
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The redeveloped building would range from four to six storeys, which is intended to bridge the gap between the nearby Redrock leisure complex and the smaller shops along Princes Street. Planning documents say the development will be a ‘significant asset to the town’, providing a ‘high quality living space’ for future residents.
“The proposed development has a unique identity which will further attract town center living, supporting Stockport town center further,” papers add. They also claim that the new housing will ‘boost the town center economy, making it a vibrant place to be during the day and evening’, as well as presenting an opportunity to regenerate an under-used site, providing homes close to jobs and services in Stockport and Manchester.
A planning statement adds: “The application proposal brings forward a comprehensive redevelopment proposal for the site that will bring a much improved provision of retail/ commercial floorspace at the ground floor/ street level. The proposal indicates the potential for three new retail/commercial spaces of varying size, that will provide choice and flexibility within the market and will help to promote improvement in the vitality of this part of the town centre.”
The plans also include some private terrace areas and a communal winter garden facility, more typical of a ‘high density town center location’. The applicant is also proposing to pay nearly £67,000 towards the provision of recreation and open space in the area.
Due to the space restrictions of the town center location, no parking spaces are proposed for the development. However the site is within walking distance of the railway station and buses stop along the nearby A6.
There would also be 40 secure cycle parking spaces for residents, with a further 12 for staff working in the ground floor shops. Stockport council will decide whether to grant planning permission for the scheme.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.