[dropcap type=”circle”]Trafford Council has approved a controversial £6million scheme to transform a Hale car park into 22 new homes and a multi-storey car park.
The planning committee approved the project by the narrowest margin of seven to six, with all six objections coming from Conservative councillors.
Brown Street Car Park – next door to Hale Railway Station – will now be transformed into a mixed site comprising a multi-storey car park, 10 new family homes and a block of 12 affordable apartments.
Hale Community Trust claimed the scheme was “contrary to the conservation area” and said it would further reduce available parking spaces in the village.
But Trafford last night gave the green light to the scheme having already appointed Altrincham-based Novo Property Group and CPUK as partners, and a 15 to 18-month build is expected to begin in March/April 2019.
Trafford already owns the car park and will retain full ownership of the site.
Novo had adapted the scheme to take into account feedback from the planning consultation period, which included two public engagement events, and has recently made a few further tweaks to building materials.
Novo’s CEO, Ben Fearns, told us that while he was delighted the scheme had been approved, he was disappointed that it had not been a unanimous decision.
He said: “There’s a bit of a dampener on it because we expected it to be a unanimous decision. There is so much that’s positive about this. It has been made into a bigger issue but the 23 lost parking spaces are less important that the £6million of investment for Hale, especially considering the affordable element.
“We now want to properly engage with Hale residents so that the impact during the build is mitigated as much as possible.”
The car park will be upgraded, with electric charging points added, increased disabled bays and new cycle stores.
The apartments are designed to be shared ownership homes and will be delivered for Southway Housing Trust to manage on completion.