A former payday lenders in Eastbourne is set to be refurbished as the council reveal plans to improve retail and housing in the town.
Eastbourne Borough Council plans to begin renovations to the former Cash Convertors site in Seaside after exchanging contracts on the building last week.
Council leader David Tutt, said the council were keen to redevelop the building as part of a wider project to improve Seaside Road and the Devonshire Ward.
He said, “I see this site as being pivotal to the regeneration of Seaside Road which in itself is the connection between the Seafront and our primary shopping area. The acquisition of this property allow us not only to provide decent homes but also change the type of business which operates from this key location.”
Both the shopfloor and 12 flats above it undergo significant refurbishment as will the outside of the building.
The move has proven popular with several residents and local business owners.
Heidi Lane, landlord of the Crown and Anchor pub, which neighbours the building says she is pleased something is being done to improve the site.
Heidi, who recently bought and renovated the pub said, “I think it will bring a lot to the area. This should be another tourism spot.
“The smaller hotels need somewhere nearby they can recommend and if the area starts to improve other businesses will start to spend money here too.”
The building’s purchase comes as part of a wider investment project through the council’s new housing investment company.
The company allows the council to develop areas of the town which it believes may need regeneration or new housing. Homes built by the company are available through the local housing register, shared ownership and at market rent.
Councillor David Tutt, said, “The first phase of the project has resulted in 100 new properties either completed or under construction, 85 of these are for affordable rent and eight properties are available through shared ownership.
“Phase two will see more residential units developed over the next three years through the Eastbourne Housing Investment Company (EHIC).
“EHIC is a ground-breaking step for any local authority to take and we’re now being asked by other councils to deliver similar schemes elsewhere.”
While there is an increased demand for housing in Eastbourne, new developments by the council have not proven popular with residents.
One proposed development – for four houses in Rodmill Drive – has been met with criticism from residents.
Norman Russell who runs Rodmill Post Office said, “There are already problems with traffic and parking on this road and putting new houses here will make it worse. I understand the council is afraid of the government and has to build new houses but why here?”
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