Salford Council’s planning panel has recommended to approve a development of four new tower blocks ranging from 12 to 23 storeys on Chapel Street.
Up to 995 flats could be built by developers Acroy Ltd on the 1.68 hectare site, part of which is occupied by a vacant warehouse and the rest used as a 300-space car park for the five-star Lowry Hotel.
Acroy are a subsidiary of the Isle of Man-headquartered Dandara Group, who built the Spectrum flats on Blackfriars Street and The Lock in Manchester.
In 2006 outline planning permission was granted for a scheme on the same site up to 40 storeys high.
The private rental scheme, close to the River Irwell, will be made up of 64 studios, 385 one-bed apartments, 440 two-bed apartments, each with a private terrace or balcony, and six three-bed houses.
Block A is between 15 and 18 storeys, fronting Dearman’s Place and Chapel Street, Block B is between 12 and 15 storeys facing the Lowry Hotel, the 17-storey Block C runs parallel to Clowes Street and Block D is 23 storeys high situated between the Lowry Hotel and the Edge apartment buildings.
On the ground floor of Block A will be just over 1,000 sq m of commercial floorspace.
24 objections were received, the majority from residents in the nearby Edge apartment block facing the River Irwell, on the grounds that the proposed development is too tall and poorly designed, residents would suffer a loss of light and privacy, local roads could not cope with increased traffic, and there would be dangerously reduced visibility at the junction of Clowes Street and Chapel Street.
Planners accept that views to number of listed building in the area could be affected, including the Grade II*-listed Sacred Trinity Church built in 1752.
The most recent census of the area shows some 4,000 households, over half of the total, are privately rented.
Council documents state: “The site is previously developed land in a highly accessible location close to the heart of the regional centre and as such development is both encouraged and welcomed.”
The council has previously passed planning permission for a 31-storey tower at One Greengate and the 40-storey Chapel Wharf tower.
Standard Section 106 money to be contributed by the developer to compensate the council for the loss of open space, public realm and heritage stands at £3,557,663, but Acroy has indicated that the scheme would be unviable and has put forward a figure of £798,000 which the council is minded to accept.
A decision will be made at Salford City Council’s planning meeting on Thursday 5 February.