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Gloucestershire Business News

Gloucester's eyesores are being transformed

Significant progress has been made regenerating some of Gloucester's eyesores, according to an update published by Gloucester City Council.

Premises detailed on a regeneration 'hit-list' originally developed prior to Gloucester playing host to the 2015 Rugby World Cup have been transformed in the last 12 months.

Royal Mail House in Eastgate Street

The former Royal Mail building in Eastern Avenue and the one-time Kwick Save site on Black Dog Way are two of the places that have been transformed, say the council.

The 'hit-list' consists of buildings with unattractive frontages, ones that have become vacant and others that are having an impact on footfall into the city centre.

It has been drawn up to aid building owners who require support to change the look of their premises.

City Council leader Councillor Paul James said: "Our hit list reflects the fact that regeneration is about the smaller sites as well as the big multi-million pound projects.

"We have been able to make good progress by offering support, advice and encouragement to landlords and, in some cases, grants.

"Where we have not got positive engagement from property owners, the use of the council's statutory powers, including compulsory purchase, remains an option.

"I'm pleased that we have been able to make progress with so many of the properties identified, but there is still more to do."

The Black Dog Way development

The update will be considered by councillors at Wednesday's cabinet meeting.

It also highlights the changes made to the former Vodafone shop on Northgate Street, which is currently being marketed to prospective clients.

The list also includes the Grade II listed Tanners Building on Worcester Street, the former KCs nightclub in Quay Street and the dockside buildings on Commercial Road earmarked for up to a dozen food businesses.

All three were granted planning permission for development this year and the council hope that work will begin at all the sites in the near future.

Also on track for redevelopment is the Grade I-listed former Fleece Hotel on Westgate Street.

There are a number of developers interested in bringing new life to the 15th Century Grade I-listed timber-framed inn.

There are other developments that are fuelling the regeneration across the city, including the student accommodation at Blackfriars.

The first phase of 295 units is now occupied, with a second wave of another 200 being granted planning consent.

And Bakers Quays has seen its first phase delivered and now features 47 modern apartments, a 104 bed Premier Inn, Beefeater restaurant and Costa Drive-thru.

The council have identified two further sites where the owners need to turn their commitment to regenerate into reality.

These are the former Fortis Insurance office on London Road and 100 Northgate Street - previously Remax Estate Agents.

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