Barnstaple shopping centre scheme put on hold
PLANS to redevelop the Queen Street/Bear Street area of Barnstaple into a new shopping centre have been put on hold. North Devon Council has decided that, due to the recession, the scheme is not viable at the moment, although interest in redeveloping th
PLANS to redevelop the Queen Street/Bear Street area of Barnstaple into a new shopping centre have been put on hold.
North Devon Council has decided that, due to the recession, the scheme is not viable at the moment, although interest in redeveloping the site in the future remains strong.
The project was mainly concentrating on providing a shopping area but also contained some housing. The main issue affecting the plans is the need for high rents and high residential values to support the cost of building the scheme.
With uncertainty in the high street among national retailers and the downturn in the housing market, the properties would never have reached the values needed to make the scheme happen.
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Leader of the council Cllr Des Brailey said: "Our aim is still to see a flagship redevelopment on the site but now is not the right time. There simply isn't the money out there to fund it. However, interest in the site remains high and we're confident that when the recession begins to lift, this project will get back on track.
"We hope this decision relieves the uncertainty for the local residents and businesses who were keen to find out what was happening and when."
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The council will continue to review the situation and when the economic climate has improved, it will relook at the site to make sure it delivers the economic benefits needed in the town centre.