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Make way Wessex House - site could be given new purpose

Published
31.10.2019

A report will be considered by cabinet that recommends the demolition of Wessex House on Great Western Road, and gives the green light for the site to be redeveloped.

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Gloucester City Council’s cabinet members will consider a proposal to demolish Wessex House on Great Western Road at next week’s cabinet meeting (6 November 2019).

A report to cabinet makes the recommendation and also gives the green light for redevelopment of the land for housing.

Wessex House was previously occupied by Edmundson Electrical, but it has been empty for a number of years. The freehold has been owned by the City Council for some time, but it recently bought in the lease to gain full control of the site.  A portion of the site will be used to enable the planned improvement works to the adjacent subway, with the remainder available for development.  The existing building was considered for redevelopment, but it was felt this would not make the most of the site’s potential.

Gloucester has considerable needs for housing of all shapes and sizes, and the site at Wessex House has been identified in the report as a suitable location for new provision.

The report recognises the negative impact this vacant site has on the local neighbourhood, which would be mitigated by having the building demolished.

Cabinet member for communities and neighbourhoods at Gloucester City Council, Jennie Watkins, said: “Making the best use of our assets to the benefit of our communities is important to Gloucester City Council.

“Wessex House has gone unoccupied for a number of years, and this report identifies the site’s potential for redevelopment into much needed housing provision in our city.

“Unfortunately empty buildings can attract antisocial behaviour and criminal activity, and this directly affects the local communities around them.  We want to reduce any unwanted activity, and this report identifies the potential to improve the neighbourhood around Wessex House site by demolishing and redeveloping it.”

Paul James, leader of Gloucester City Council and cabinet member for regeneration and economy said: “Redeveloping this site will complement the improvements we are making to the Railway Station and the area around it, including the subway, and will remove another eyesore from the City Council’s Regeneration hit list, as well as providing much-needed new housing.”

If approved, the demolition of Wessex House would be done around the same time as Bruton Way car park and adjacent Bentinck House, which form part of the Kings Quarter redevelopment.

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