Unanimous support for mixed-use local centre in Warwick

Pegasus Lower Heathcote Centre, Warwick

A mixed-use local centre at Lower Heathcote, Warwick comprising shops, a care home, children’s day nursery and new offices, has been unanimously approved by Warwick District Council.

The planning committee met on Wednesday and followed officers’ recommendations to support the scheme at Harbury Lane, that includes a central public square, landscaping and parking.

The Local Centre will serve the day-to-day needs of residents of the urban extension south of Lower Heathcote, known as Land South of Harbury Lane, which is allocated for 1,605 new homes within the Council’s Local Plan.

Cirencester-headquartered consultants Pegasus Group provided planning services in support of the application, including the provision of a retail impact assessment and town centre sequential assessment regarding the retail and office uses respectively.

Ben Cook, Principal Planner at Pegasus Group’s Birmingham office, said: “We were instructed by LSP Developments and Gallagher Estates to submit an application for full planning permission in respect of Lower Heathcote Local Centre.

“The mixed-use scheme of five retail units, a new office for L&Q Estates, a care home and nursery is set to serve local residents.

“The retail units and care home have been designed around a focal ‘public square’ which will help to create vitality and natural surveillance throughout the day and into the evening.

“The care home itself will provide high quality care accommodation with 75 single occupancy en suite bedrooms across three storeys, as well as communal areas including lounges, dining rooms, library, activities room, cinema room and hair salon. It is estimated that the home will create 70 full time jobs.

“The proposed day nursery is anticipated to have a capacity of 100-children at any one time.”

In a report to the planning committee, council officers said: “The design and layout of the development enables social interaction and engagement between all uses, in particular the care home, office and retail uses, promoting active frontages and a community cohesion that residents of the care home would not otherwise benefit from if the care home were proposed in a more isolated location.

“Overall, the proposal represents a wholly sustainable form of development that would benefit the wider community.”