PLANS to demolish 40 redundant garages and build nine flats have returned – a year after a similar scheme was rejected by a planning inspector.

Irongate Developments has lodged another application to build a block of flats on land at Bilbao Court, Vigo Road, Andover. 

In 2021 an application to demolish the garages and build nine flats was refused by the council, and an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate was dismissed in 2022. Two prior applications for nine flats were withdrawn in 2016 and 2020.

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Andover Advertiser: The redundant garages in Bilbao Court, Vigo RoadEarlier this year, Irongate Developments sought pre-application advice from Test Valley Borough Council and made changes to the plans. This includes the removal of a footpath to the east of the building and the creation of landscaping, the removal of four parking spaces enabling the creation of further landscaping within the north and south parking area, and additional tree planting on the boundaries of the site.

The developer has also reduced the number of two-bed flats, from nine to six.

In its planning statement, Irongate Developments said: “The brownfield site comprises a block of circa 40 redundant garages formerly associated with Bilbao Court.

“The garages are unused and vacant for parking purposes as they are too small in dimension to be used as parking spaces. They are not used for the parking of modern vehicles. The site is redundant and is an unattractive element within the site, and when viewed from Vigo Road.”

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The proposed building will be three-storey with three flats on each level, with common stairwells as access to the first and second floors. A mix of dwellings are proposed.

Each flat will comprise a kitchen, dining and living room, with one / two bedrooms and associated bathroom. Integrated balconies will be provided for the first and second-floor flats.

As for car parking, the developer has said that there are 17 spaces within the site.

In response to the previous application, concerns were raised around the living conditions for some of the residents regarding external amenity space, privacy, noise and disturbance, and the appearance of the scheme.