Town hall car park sale will 'help job creation'
COUNCILLORS were last night poised to enter into an agreement to sell a car park to developers who want to build a supermarket behind the town hall in Torquay.
Torbay Council has been asked to enter a conditional contract to lease the site at Castle Circus to developers.
A report before the full council said the idea will bring a 'step change in the pace of regeneration' and will help job creation in the town.
The busy car park is earmarked for the development of a new 40,000 sq ft supermarket which it is hoped will breathe new life into the town centre.
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Councillors were due to discuss the plans at the full council meeting.
Under the terms of the agreement, a 199-year 'peppercorn' ground lease would be granted to Hawkstone PLC in return for the developer paying a premium sum of not less than £2.5million.
The contract to lease the land will be subject to the developer getting planning approval for a food store with car parking.
If agreed the developer will have to submit plans within six months and start work within 12 months.
Iain Masters, from the Torbay Development Agency, told Torquay Neighbourhood Plan Forum this was a separate process to planning permission being sought.
He said the supermarket would be about the size of Morrisons in Totnes and at Paignton Zoo and Sainsbury's at Paignton.
The scheme would replace the existing parking spaces and provide more for the supermarket.
The Shopmobility and Coalition of Disabled People units in Lymington Road would move to a temporary home before finding a permanent place.