More time should be given to market office spaces at Portland House, Framfield Road, Uckfield, before allowing their conversion into flats, say town councillors.
They believe insufficient time has elapsed since the completion of the development – on the old Pandemonium play centre site – to allow the change of use to take place.
Members of the plans committee, meeting on Monday (June 26), agreed it was a tough decision to make; setting the need for modern office space against the requirements to provide homes for local people.
They agreed to object to the retrospective application for conversion of ground floor office units to five self-contained flats with changes to fenestration on ground, first and second floors, because it was felt that the office units had been marketed for an insufficient length of time for space of this size.
It was recommended that marketing of these office units should continue for a further six months and be in a finished state in order that they be seen as a viable option for businesses.
Wealden District Council will make the decision on the application.
Town councillors discussed the application extensively and had questions to ask if a representative of the developer had attended the meeting.
There was no representative so councillors could not establish if the property was in a finished state to let as offices.
Councillors commented that the property was always of a domestic style and in a location far better served as a domestic dwelling.
It was noted that the rental for this space was considerable greater than others locally and that no comparison could be made to Glynde, as stated in their Design Statement which accompanies the planning application.
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