Housing plan for Torquay B&Q site to be discussed
PLANS to demolish the derelict B&Q site at Torre and replace it with social housing will be unveiled at a meeting with community leaders next week.
The Torbay Development Agency is working with a social housing provider to buy the eyesore plot of land from the Torquay Cavanna Group of developers.
It is understood that plans for town houses, flats and a possible GP practice and chemist are on the cards.
A Torbay Development Agency spokesman said: "The former B&Q building in Laburnum Row has remained empty for almost four years since the store closed.
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"Due to the importance of the site to the area, discussions have been held with the current owners to consider options for the building's future, and these discussions are ongoing.
"At the request of ward councillors, the TDA has set up a meeting on May 31 to broaden out the discussions to include community representatives."
Residents have been campaigning for the eyesore DIY warehouse to be tidied up since 2008.
The Cavanna Group's head of planning Ian Pugsley said: "We have accepted an offer subject to planning. It is very early days."
A meeting of traders and community leaders will be held on Thursday, May 31, prior to a full public meeting and exhibition later in June.
Ward councillor Darren Cowell said: "The reason for the meeting next week is so that representatives of the community partnership, Torre Action Group and traders can go back to their members and get the community involved at an early stage.
"The public exhibition will then give the public a chance to talk to the architects and members of the TDA.
"It is a positive step forward.
"I understand there would be about seven town houses and a number of two-bedroom flats and it sounds like an ideal development, with an area of green.
"The people of Torre have been incredibly patient and if the terms have finally been signed with Cavanna it's great news.
"I would like to think we can see demolition reasonably quickly, maybe by the end of the summer."