Ecclesall Road flats up for approval despite looming planning inquiry

An artist's impression of a private and student flat complex planned for Ecclesall Road. Photo: Hallminster/Bond Bryan
An artist's impression of a private and student flat complex planned for Ecclesall Road. Photo: Hallminster/Bond Bryan
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Councillors will next week be asked to approve a £35 million student and private flats scheme in Ecclesall Road - despite the site being subject of a planning inquiry from the same developer.

Hallminster wants to redevelop the site of the old Vauxhall showroom between Summerfield Street and Pear Street.

The firm’s plan is to build four blocks ranging from six to 11 storeys, providing more than 2,000 sq ft of retail space, 136 residential apartments, accommodation for 190 students and basement car parking.

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A previous application by Hallminster for a bigger development on the same site, which was rejected by Sheffield Council in September 2015, is still the subject of a planning inquiry, which is due to be heard in February.

The new application was supposed to address some of the council’s concerns about the rejected development - namely that it would be too big for the surrounding area and could harm the prospect of redeveloping neighbouring land.

And council officers have this time sided with the developers, asking that councillors approve the plans at Tuesday’s meeting.

A report to the planning and highways committee says Hallminster has addressed concerns about the height of the student block, reducing it by 15 per cent - from 12 storeys to 11.

It also points to the removal of ‘habital windows’ facing neighbouring land, meaning development on that land would not be obstructed.

And the report says the development is no longer ‘overbearing’.

The planning appeal is still active, despite the new application.

The development is the latest of several large schemes planned for Ecclesall Road.

Last month councillors approved plans to build a 784-bed complex of student and private flats on the former Gordon Lamb car dealership site nearby. The complex will include buildings up to 10 storeys high.

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