Detailed plans to regenerate one of Taunton’s prime riverside quarters have been given approval by Taunton Deane Borough Council’s planning committee.
The plans for the Coal Orchard were developed by the Council with its project and development management partner, Mace Group.
The plans include a mix of apartments, retail, workspace, restaurants and gym, and incorporate a riverfront plaza with a stepped terrace to make the most of its position on the River Tone.
Work at the Coal Orchard could start as early as spring 2019 and will create the first link in a chain of developments connecting the station directly to the established town centre.
Cllr Mark Edwards, executive councillor for business development, said:
“The plans respect the character of Coal Orchard and will bring new vitality to the area putting the River Tone at the heart of Taunton.
They are carefully created to strike a balance between retaining the character, enhancing the environment and our aspirations for growth reflecting our Garden Town status.
They are a vital link in the chain of a wider plans for Taunton town centre and I am genuinely excited that they will be coming to reality.
There has already been considerable interest in the commercial and retail units, and I believe there will be similar interest in the residential apartments in this unique location.”
Andrew Clancy, projects director from Mace Group, said:
“We are excited by the potential of the Coal Orchard site, one that we having been working on with the Council for the past three years.
We are delighted to be involved in the project, and believe that it will act as a catalyst for other regeneration projects in the town.
The council’s vision for the site has been clear for over 10 years through their adopted policies and I am proud to have personally being involved.”
St James Street Pool will be demolished but key features will be retained in the development, for example, the historic foundation stone will be incorporated into the public realm scheme.
The area around the Brewhouse Theatre will also be protected for potential expansion under a separate project being led by Taunton Deane Borough Council in partnership with The Taunton Theatre Association.