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New homes granted in Victorian terrace
The demolition of an old warehouse, nestled within in a "gem" of a Victorian terrace, has been given planning permission by Watford Borough Council.
The development control committee met last night to discuss plans to demolish the building and replace it with a two storey block of flats.
The scheme, which is situated behind number 121B St Albans Road, was approved.
Councillor George Derbyshire said: "This terrace is a gem. The west side is a very attractive Victorian terrace built in 1888 and has all the features of Watford’s Victorian heritage.
"I’m hoping the officers will be particularly diligent in strictly adhering to those materials rather than ruining it with PVC elements.
"It will be an improvement, the existing empty commercial building is not particularly attractive."
The development will include two self contained flats, as well as recycling, waste storage bins and bicycle stands.
The current building is two storeys high, and comprises of a retail unit on the ground floor with accommodation above.
A council report said the building had been vacant "for some time" and "generally suffers from a degree of neglect and disrepair, as such, it attracts certain degree of anti-social behaviour.
"The existing building does not possess any architectural merit and makes no positive contribution to the character of the area.
"Considering the unsightly nature of the existing building, the proposal will have a positive impact on the character and appearance of the conservation area which will enhance the character of this part of the conservation area."
Letters were sent to 16 properties in St Albans Road and Terrace Gardens, and objections received included loss of outlook and light, overlooking and loss of privacy and increase of fly tipping.
A petition containing 37 signatures has been received opposing the scheme.
Habib Neshat, planning officer, said: "It is a built up area but this site will have minimal impact. Watford is a built up area. This is no exception.
"I’m not promising everything is going to be perfectly, there are going to be problems but they will be minimised.
"The fewer car spaces available the fewer cars will come here. This is a narrow site. By not having a car will improve the parking situation. This scheme is far better than the existing scheme."
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