An application has been lodged to change a Chester business park into housing.
Christopher Wade is seeking the permitted development order (PDO) from Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) in a plan that would see Mollington Grange Business Park, off Parkgate Road, converted into 30 homes.
A PDO allows certain building works and changes of use to be carried out without having to make a planning application.
The business park is the base for firms including Mococo jewellery, Bespoke Brides, John Woods Motorcare and Bianca Trading wine merchants.
Oak Grange Care Home is located next to the business park but is unaffected.
The park freehold is owned by William Wild andSon, run by Mr Wade, and Bell Developments are leaseholders on part of the land, with both companies based on site.
Tenants were told about the proposed conversion to residential earlier this year but the timing over when companies must move out is dependent on their individual tenancy agreements. Several businesses told The Chronicle they were ‘shocked’ on learning of the plan.
Mike Bell, a director at Bell, who is heading up the project, told The Chronicle previously: “We do intend to convert the offices into residential. The units will be two and three bed mews houses which will be sold on the open market. We see it as a semi rural high quality development.”
Planning consent was unnecessary, argued Mr Bell, as the exteriors would remain unaltered and the matter would be dealt with under permitted development.
There was a possibility the scheme might be ‘mixed use’ with existing businesses which complemented the housing scheme allowed to stay.
Mr Bell continued: “It would be more like a fit-out exercise, taking stuff out, putting some partition walls in and converting the properties into nice little courtyard developments.”
He said no parking would be allowed in The Courtyard area which would be turned into a garden.
Consultee Paul Parry, who works for CWaC highways department, has no objections to the scheme.
He wrote: “It is considered that the conversion of the various businesses/offices on the site to residential use would not result in a significant increase in traffic using the site access junction onto the A540. On that basis I would raise no highway objections to the proposal.”