Land in Dolsden Town Center, along with the former library site, could soon be sold by the council for 1 million for housing.
Thameside chiefs have decided to withdraw from a contract with a developer for a parcel of land known as the Lockkeepers site off Manchester Road to be sold.
The council signed a development agreement with developer Watkin Jones back in 2005 to provide a major redevelopment scheme in Druidsden.
While the work has worked on a ‘major’ mixed-use scheme, which has seen new developments in housing and the completion of the marina, the Lock Keepers site is underdeveloped.
Town Hall owns the site’s freehold, and members of the executive cabinet have now voted to withdraw from the development agreement with Watkin-Jones.
The site was developed for commercial purposes rather than residential development, but despite extensive marketing, ‘appropriate commercial use’ was not identified for the site.
Officials say the site has been in discussions with Watkins Jones about the potential for residential development, to which the developer offered to pay k 400k.
However, the council then independently evaluated the scheme, which indicated a ‘headline value’ of m 1m for the land.
The report to the Cabinet states: “This site occupies approximately two acres in a highly accessible location near Manchester Road near the city and is an attractive development opportunity for a high quality / density residential development scheme. Offers. “
Cabinet member for finance, Councilor Oliver Ryan, said: “The only thing we can agree on is that we can make it conditional on our plans.
“People will be aware that we have received some additional investment from Greater Monster to move forward with the restoration of the Drawelson Library and as part of that additional accommodation.”
The council has since agreed to withdraw the Lockkeepers site from the development agreement, and to declare the library building as well as a surplus, which will soon be demolished.
This will allow the council to consider ‘future sales’ of the site in accordance with its disposal policy.
Jane Travers, director of development, added: “This includes our other plans to build the library, move the library to the Pension Fund building, and demolish and release the site for housing.
“Watkin-Jones has offered the council money for the land but it is much less than the confirmed price of a free-lance car and therefore we are not proposing to continue this occupation.”
The keynote meeting was informed that talks are also underway with Watkin-Jones about two small parcels of land sitting next to the site that would be ‘beneficial’, although officials say the council has gained control. Not necessary to