Rotherham Council has approved plans to redevelop a prominent town centre building back to include apartments, shops, and leisure use.
Westgate Chambers on Main Street is now set to be brought back to life after years of uncertainty surrounding the site since Rotherham Borough Council decided to sell up in 2014.
The complex includes six buildings which surround an enclosed courtyard, with part of the site Grade 2 listed.
Many locals know the site as the former co-op buildings, which were originally constructed in 1794 by local architect John Platt as a residence for himself.
The site sits adjacent to Forge Island which has been identified for major development in the town centre Masterplan, with plans for a cinema, hotel, and restaurants.
The site also encompasses the recently refurbished 1915 Bar and Bistro, which remains separate to the redevelopment.
Two unlisted buildings on Domine Lane are set to be demolished as part of the plans - a late nineteenth-century two-storey brick building and a three-story 1960s office building, which are both in a dilapidated state.
These will be replaced with a single building incorporating 32 apartments with integral balconies or roof terraces, and retail space.
The existing courtyard entrance will be moved to the bottom of the street, which will potentially allow the Council to pedestrianize Domine Lane as detailed in the Town Centre Masterplan.
Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy Denise Lelliott said: “One of the Council’s key priorities is to help local people and businesses benefit from a growing economy, with a thriving town centre and more people living, working and spending their leisure time here.
“We are already seeing new developments in the town centre – including housing developments on Ship Hill and High Street, a new bar within Westgate Chambers, and restaurant close by – and these developments reflect the growing confidence investors have with our Town Centre regeneration plans.”
Further buildings will be renovated, each with their own individual character, providing retail, leisure and hospitality space at ground floor, with a further 29 apartments above.
New frontages will mirror the heritage-led regeneration of the nearby High Street, with part of the building having its Georgian façade reinstated with staggered roof terraces.
Peter Hill, Director of HMP Bespoke Construction Ltd, said: “These are exciting times ahead for all concerned with this prestigious scheme.
“We now look forward to it moving forward with the additional regeneration of Rotherham town centre, bringing in new restaurants, entertainment and leisure facilities to help new residents to live, work, rest and play within the town centre and most important of all creating new town centre jobs.”
In addition to the Forge Island Development, the town centre Masterplan identifies a new University Centre, and a large increase in the residential offer, including a target of 1,000 new homes for the town centre by 2025. Rotherham’s Growth Plan also includes a target of 30,000 new homes for the borough by 2030.
Our BQ Bulletin emails will land in your inbox at 7.30am, Monday to Friday, with a mix of the latest local business news, national news, and features to inspire you. Sign up here!
Click here to read our privacy statement