Station Hill: Reading office block plans approved

image copyrightLincoln MGT
image captionWork on an 18-storey office tower, One Station Hill, is due to start in Spring

Proposals for an 18-storey office block and park near Reading railway station have been given planning permission.

The 125m (410ft) building is part of the £750m redevelopment of Station Hill.

Building work on One Station Hill is set to begin in spring and is due to be completed in 2024.

Reading Borough Council approved the plans, submitted by developer Lincoln MGT, during a planning meeting on Wednesday.

The NCP car park in Garrard Street will be demolished to make way for the office block, "pocket park" and 70-space car park, as part of phase two of the project.

The company was also granted outline planning permission for a "flexible mixed-use scheme" at Station Hill, which is right outside Reading Station, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS).

During phase three of the project it is looking to build 750 homes, office space for around 9,000 workers, shops, cafes and restaurants on four plots of land, with a large plaza in the middle.

image copyrightLincoln MGT
image captionThe planned development is near Reading railway station

Deputy council leader councillor Tony Page said: "It will deliver a very long-overdue redevelopment and regeneration of an eyesore site."

At the meeting concerns were raised about the developer's promise to ensure 10% of homes built during phase three will be classed as affordable.

Usually with major developments the council asks for 30% of homes to be affordable, but Lincoln MGT insists that would not be viable for this development.

The company has agreed to a deferred payment scheme, which means that if it makes more than 20% profit after construction, it will provide more affordable homes on site or make a financial contribution to the council.

image copyrightGoogle
image captionThe NCP car park in Garrard Street will be demolished

Phase one of the development, which includes plans for over 500 homes, offices, shops and leisure space on the southern area of the Station Hill site, was approved in 2019.

Lincoln MGT says the £750 million redevelopment will provide more than 1,200 homes, 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, and 600,000 sq ft of office space  when it is completed.

Several ambitious plans for the site were abandoned, before it was bought by the property firm in 2018.

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