Co-op: we’re committed to regeneration of the Bridge

CONFIDENTIAL discussions about how Leale’s Yard might be developed have been progressing between the Co-op and the States, the retailer has said.

Back in 2016 this was the artist’s impression of new plans for the development of Leale’s Yard and areas of the Bridge. Development has since stalled.
Back in 2016 this was the artist’s impression of new plans for the development of Leale’s Yard and areas of the Bridge. Development has since stalled.

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society chief development officer Jim Plumley said the company remains committed to securing a solution for Leale’s Yard.

Mr Plumley’s statement follows lengthy debates in the States last week about a push to get development at Leale’s Yard moving.

‘The society has been discussing, in confidence, ideas for the development of Leale’s Yard with the States of Guernsey for the past 10 months. We have a policy of not discussing ongoing commercially sensitive and confidential matters in the public domain so unfortunately are not in a position to discuss these ideas in detail.’

The Co-op said it remains committed to the regeneration and development of the Bridge area and a number of positive ideas have been exchanged that would achieve this objective, however no firm decisions have been made on the future of the site.

‘We are confident that, when the right plans for the island are decided and agreed, the development will bring substantial benefits to the area. As a community retailer, we take our responsibilities for protecting our members’ interests, as well as preserving and championing the community, very seriously. We are conscious of our obligations to our community in the Bridge area and will continue to work with the States of Guernsey to find the right solution for Leale’s Yard.’

However, the society has contested that it wants millions of pounds of public money to tackle chemical and asbestos issues to clear the site.

In February 2016 the Co-op released its last concept for the site, featuring 412 homes and new retail and community facilities.

A majority – 370 units – of the housing were apartments.

Two buildings on the Bridge would be demolished to create access to the development, with plans to move Homemaker to the Bridge, with its Lowlands location redeveloped for four other businesses.

Full planning permission was granted for demolition and then the erection of two buildings with 109 units of housing on 24 August 2016, but that will expire next month after three years.

Outline planning permission was granted for 303 units, which also expires on 24 August.

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