New plans submitted for apartments and retail units on the signature Budgens site

New plans submitted for apartments and retail units on the signature Budgens site

New plans have been submitted by Morris Property for the former Budgens site. They are the same in principle as the previous plans, with two retail units on the ground floor and nineteen apartments above with communal and private terraces.

There have been several changes in design. The building will of a modern design throughout using traditional materials over a steel frame with high levels of thermal efficiency. This design is a considerable improvement on the unused Budgens store. It will also boost trade in the Galdeford Tower area.

As always, these plans will need to be studied in detail.

The proposed scheme (right) with an outline of the One Stop scheme

The proposal is for 19 apartments with 12 parking spaces (19/05380/FUL). Three apartments will be low cost ownership (2×1 bed; 1×2 bed). Low cost ownership is a designated form of affordable housing that must be discounted by at least 20% of the market price. Sixteen apartments will be sold at market price (1×1 bed; 15×2 bed).

Residents will have access to a communal terrace on the One Stop side of the building and some apartments will have private terraces.

The much used path between Upper Galdeford and the Galdeford Car Park will be widened from 2.1m to between 2.4m and 2.7m. The current brick revetment to the car park road access will be replaced by greenery. The taxi rank will be unaffected and seating will be provided for customers.

The scheme is similar in massing and area to the previous proposal. But the proposed faux historic frontage has been replaced by a contemporary design. I haven’t taken a view on the design yet but generally a modern design is preferable adjacent to a conservation area. The Galdeford frontage in the previous design continued a theme already approved for 9 Tower Street, the One Stop site. That design may need to be rethought if this scheme is approved.

View from Upper Galdeford
View from Galdeford Car Park
View from Lower Galdeford
View from Galdeford Car Park looking east

The proposal is for 19 apartments with 12 parking spaces (19/05380/FUL). Three apartments will be low cost ownership (2×1 bed; 1×2 bed). Low cost ownership is a designated form of affordable housing that must be discounted by at least 20% of the market price. Sixteen apartments will be sold at market price (1×1 bed; 15×2 bed).

Residents will have access to a communal terrace on the One Stop side of the building and some apartments will have private terraces.

The much used path between Upper Galdeford and the Galdeford Car Park will be widened from 2.1m to between 2.4m and 2.7m. The current brick revetment to the car park road access will be replaced by greenery. The taxi rank will be unaffected and seating will be provided for customers.

The scheme is similar in massing and area to the previous proposal. But the faux historic frontage has been replaced by a modern frontage. I haven’t taken a view on the design yet but generally a modern design is preferable adjacent to a conservation area. The Galdeford frontage in the previous design continued a theme already approved for 9 Tower Street, the One Stop site. That design may need to be rethought if this scheme is approved.

The building is of a stepped design with communal and private terraces. The fourth floor is described as a penthouse level. The architect Trever Howlett says it “will not be easily seen at street level”.

Section view

The accommodation will be entered via an unstaffed foyer, which the developer says will allow residents to mix and provide a space to meet non-residents.

The ground floor will also accommodate two retail units. The revised application still describes the units as Class A1, which means they could be shops not cafes or drinking establishments. However, on 1 September 2020 Class A1 was moved into a  new category, Class E . This is a wide ranging use class. It includes shops, cafes, drinking establishments and restaurants, but not takeaways. The class also includes health, fitness, nurseries, offices and industry. Just about everything. However, I haven’t heard anything to suggest that developer plans anything other than shops initially.

The building is insulated with a thermal envelope. The roof looks like it can accommodate solar panels or perhaps a green roof. Another green option might be a ground source heat pump under the car park area making the building ultra-energy efficient.  

Ground floor plan
First floor plan with affordable units

Site context

One interesting aspect of the proposal is a passing mention of a future open space between the new building and Ludlow Library:

“The relationship with the library building presents another opportunity for robust design. The library features an architecturally dominant terraced monopitch roof design. This creates an underutilised focus to its south which, combined with existing amenable proportions, make conditions suitable for the creation of a public open space. This would be particularly effective if a connectivity enhancing feature such as a taxi rank or dropoff facility is created. The design of the proposed development is robust should such townscape enhancements become an opportunity in the future.”

This was an area that the former South Shropshire District Council was considering for a bus and coach station. There are still merits in that proposal and I hope it will be considered seriously during development of the Ludlow Sustainable Transport Strategy in 2021.

The proposal for a transport hub dates back to 2005

Planning permission for the adjacent One Stop building, 9 Tower Street, has expired but the expectation is that it will be renewed once someone shows interest in the site. It is a shame that these two sites are not being developed together eliminating the alley, which is urination stop late at night, and compensating for its loss with a wider public space to the east of the car park alongside the entrance to the Galdeford car park. Morris Property already own the area to the rear of 9 Tower Street and Attorney’s Walk.

3 thoughts on “New plans submitted for apartments and retail units on the signature Budgens site

  1. I’m sorry but the new scheme looks far worse than the old one to my eyes. I appreciate that a modern design like Tesco’s can really work amongst the older buildings but this one is just dull. It looks like it belongs on a business park in Peterborough.

    Interesting that you mention the smelly alley, perhaps the way to solve this is to provide public toilets that are open late rather than moving the problem elsewhere? People will still need a wee, especially while waiting for a taxi after 8 pints of Ludlow Gold.

    This could be a once in a generation chance to do something new with the area.

    The council could build that hanging garden multi story carpark that was proposed a few years back along with a bus/coach/taxi station. You could move the entrance to the carpark to allow easier coach access and generally tidy the whole area up. It’s just a shame that the doctors couldn’t have moved to the new hospital as part of it.

  2. I agree with Rich- the imitation vernacular replaced with a boring late 20th Century brutalist monstrosity totally lacking in imagination that manages make Budgens almost attractive.
    Meanwhile the Developer owned Onestop site remains undeveloped and we hear zilch from our councillors, Town and County about alternative central town Post Office facilities.

    1. This is an unfair comment about unitary councillors and the post office. The way retail and planning works means councillors cannot plan to move the post office. Especially as it has a secure location for at least eighteen months. We have previously proposed the Library but the PO refused because it wants to co-locate with a retail unit. We have been trying to calm down speculation that the post office is under immediate threat. If a new planning application is submitted in January (if), it will take three months to clear the planning system. Ludlow PO is on a one year notice lease. That makes at least 18 months given nothing will happen at high speed. Allow for the very uncertain retail climate and the oversupply of Ludlow with housing, we are not going to going to see any threat to the post office in the foreseeable future. The foreseeable future is very short these days.

      We have been talking to PO managers. We hear nothing much. But they have no plan of action because there is no threat yet. I haven’t written on Ludlow PO since April because nothing has happened.

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