Demolition of Bristol Debenhams for tower block approved

Plans to demolish a former department store in Bristol to make way for a 28-storey tower block have been approved.

The Debenhams store - empty for three years - will be knocked down to make way for 500 new apartments.

More than 100 people objected to the plans claiming the tower block would harm city centre views.

But the developer said the city was facing an "enormous housing crisis" and a "housing-led mixed use redevelopment" was the "only answer" for the site.

The city-centre Debenhams closed in May 2021 after a decline in sales fuelled by the pandemic.

Plans for the site include 502 flats, 100 of which will be classed as "affordable", with 75 of these social rent and 25 shared ownership, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS).

Proposals also include a new street connecting the Bearpit to the Horsefair, with shops, bars, cafes and restaurants on the ground floor.

Bristol City Councillors on the planning committee were split, but a majority voted in favour of the new homes.

Charlie Royle, from developer 33 Horsefair Ltd, said: "Our proposal would repurpose the site into a green, attractive, safe, and vibrant place to live, work and socialise."

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