New gym plans for retail park

Plans have been submitted for a new gym
Plans have been submitted for a new gym
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A new health and fitness centre could be brought to a Preston shopping area.

Plans have been submitted to convert two empty units on a retail park into a 24-hour gym.

And local councillors have welcomed the prospect of bringing new business to the area.

Worthington Properties Ltd has lodged an application relating to two units on North Road Retail Park on North Road.

A letter from agents Smith Planning Consultancy said two operators were interested in the units, i-motion gym and The Gym.

St Georges ward councillor James Hull said he would welcome any development that brought industry into the area.

Coun Hull said: “I think it would be good for the area to get more units used.

“I welcome any development that is going to help the area improve, as long as it doesn’t impact badly on any other residents.”

The agent’s letter said the units were well connected to the city centre with good public transport provision, and was also well connected to the surrounding residential population.

It said: “No disbenefits would result from a grant of planning permission - rather that the occupation of the units would enhance the economic profile of the area on this key route into Preston.

“The use of the unit or units for leisure purposes would not result in an adverse impact on the amenity of local residents.”

Members of Preston Council’s planning committee are set to decide on the application at a meeting on March 3, where approval is recommended subject to conditions.

A report to councillors said: “The proposed development as a health and fitness centre would comprise the re-use of the existing unused retail floorspace that has been vacant for some time and would not result in the increase in ‘main town centre’ floorspace, but would instead result in the re-use of existing main town centre floorspace for an alternative use.”

It said: “The proposal would bring a long standing vacant retail unit back into active use and the development complies with the relevant provisions of the Preston local plan and the framework.

“No objections to the application have been received and there are no material considerations which outweigh this finding.”