Planning inspector raises concerns over parking as student accommodation plans rejected

A DEVELOPER who has planning permission to convert a former children’s nursery in Swansea into accommodation for eight students has failed to increase the number to 13.

He wanted to add a small extension to Twizzle Lodge, Uplands, to help create the extra space for 13 studios but had his planning application refused by Swansea Council.

He appealed the decision but has been told the proposal would cause parking and road safety problems.

The developer was agreeable to tenants having to sign a legal agreement preventing them from parking within three kilometres of the Hawthorne Avenue building, but Welsh Government-appointed planning inspector Penelope Davies said it was not clear how this could be enforced.

She accepted that the former nursery was close to shops and bus stops – reducing the need for car journeys – but said in her report that the 13-bed scheme “would add substantially to the demand for parking”.

Ms Davies said the former nursery, which closed in 2016, generated a parking demand of its own but she added that this was generally short-term and during week days. Her report said the 13 studios would not have harmed neighbours’ living conditions, despite occasions of students returning home late “and possibly in high spirits”.

The extended accommodation at Twizzle Lodge would have provided a communal living space, kitchen, laundry area and bike storage.

An agent on behalf of the developer had argued that the former Twizzle Lodge nursery catered for up to 65 children and 13 members of staff, which required considerably more parking than 13 student studios.

In the agent’s view, the nursery building was “more than capable of” accommodating the 13 studios.

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