Planning permission granted for post office development
Planning application 182252 for 620 flats and townhouses with office and other space on the former Post Office site in Caversham Road has been approved by the council. This is an outline planning application to establish the principle of the development, so there is scope for further negotiation of the details (known as ‘reserved matters’).
David Neale from the Bell Tower Community Association spoke at the council’s planning committee in opposition to the application, expressing concerns about the scale of the development, particularly the 8-storey height proposed along Caversham Road and its impact on the local environment, including on the locally-listed Victorian malthouse that used to be occupied by Drews ironmongers. Concern was also expressed about the high density and lack of green space in the development leading to it being undesirable to live in, and whether the proposed office space was likely to be used.
After some discussion the planning committee eventually voted unanimously to approve the application. One factor that might have influenced this is the developer of the SSE site in Vastern Road recently making a successful appeal against refusal of their application, with councillors perhaps concerned that the owners of the post office site might also successfully appeal against refusal.
(Photo: Hermes Property)