Plans for two student homes in Ormskirk have been passed by West Lancashire Borough Council.
The first application regards 53 Moor Street which is due to be changed from commercial use into mixed retail and student accommodation.
Under the proposals the front of the terraced property will remain as a shop with new signage and windows to be installed, while the back and second floor of the house will become student accommodation for eight students.
In Ormskirk streets have a percentage limit controlling how many homes of multiple occupation are allowed. Moor street has a limit of 15% and currently HMOs only account for 5% of homes, so the development is therefore acceptable under the council’s policy.
Apart from new windows to the front and rear of the property, to allow for ventilation and light into the new accommodation, the application does not seek to change the structure or outward appearance of the existing building.
However, an objection to the plans was received from the Ormskirk Residents group which objected on the grounds that large numbers of students occupied the streets surrounding the development. The group also complained that this section of Moor Street “is subject to some of the worse term time, early hours, anti-social behaviour.”
Lancashire Police have also identified the property as being at risk of crime so have stipulated that the new home must have secure doors and windows and security lighting installed outside.
The second application given the go-ahead is for shops on St Helen’s road to be turned into a home for nine students.
Numbers 5-7 St Helen’s Road has been marketed for retail development since 2011 with no success so now developers are changing it into student accommodation to meet rising demand.
The plans are for nine student en-suite bedrooms built over three levels.
The development is already surrounded by existing student accommodation so developers are keen to build in this location.
Ormskirk resident’s group also objected to this application using similar reasons to before that “the location and around into Moor Street by the bus station sees some of the worse term time, early hours, antisocial behaviour.”
Despite the objections council officers have granted both applications however and work is due to begin in the coming months.