Henderson Global Investors, on behalf of its £12.4 billion (approx. 14.9 billion.) property business, has received outline planning permission and conservation area consent for its scheme in Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire.
The planning agreements to complete outline permission from East Herts District Council were signed on Tuesday. Henderson now expects to submit detailed full plans for the regeneration of the Old River Lane scheme in the summer.
Henderson, on behalf of its UK Property Fund, is investing £105 million (approx. 126.6 million) in the over three and half hectare site in the north-east corner of the town centre. The scheme includes a new 30,000 ft² (approx. 2,800 m²) department store; an extension to the existing Waitrose store; approximately 35 shops, of which 10 are smaller units designed for independent traders; two restaurants; a digital cinema, circa 670 parking spaces and up to 100 residential units.
The scheme contains four main areas, which will be fully pedestrianized and contain three new public spaces. It has been carefully designed to fit in with the eclectic architectural style of the town and the views of local residents. It has been designed to enhance the conservation area in which it sits as well as improve access to some of the town's heritage assets, including the Castle and the United Reformed Church which are adjacent to the site. The site is currently occupied by East Hertfordshire District Council 'Causeway' offices, an East Hertfordshire District Council 'pay and display' car park and the Waitrose car park.
Cameron Fraser, Fund Manager of the Henderson UK Property Fund said: "We are delighted to have received outline planning permission for the Old River Lane scheme. The redevelopment will further enhance the public space and range of facilities that are available in this historic market town. It will enhance access to some of its heritage assets, such as the Castle and the United Reformed Church, as well as help meet the demand for additional retail capacity that has been identified by East Hertfordshire District Council.
"We were committed from the outset to get the views of as many residents and businesses on the scheme and have been through a lengthy consultation and application period in order to reach this stage. We are confident that the plans which have been approved will create a new quarter in the town centre that will encourage more inward investment from the community."
The scheme is forecasted to create over 800 jobs throughout the process, whether that be during the construction process or once the scheme is completed and in operation. Providing reserved matters applications are approved later this year, construction is planned to begin in 2014 with the scheme anticipated to open in 2016.
Source: Henderson Global Investors