Old Torquay office block to make way for new businesses

Torbay Weekly

A 'hideous' old office block in Torquay is to be demolished and replaced with new commercial buildings following a vote by Torbay Council’s planning committee.

Panther Investment Properties Ltd, a Hertfordshire-based property investor, now has outline planning permission to demolish redundant offices at Woodlands Trading Estate, Torquay, and replace them with new buildings for commercial storage and distribution or general industry.

The council believes that, when in use,  the site could provide workspace for up to 47 full-time equivalent jobs.

The space was previously used by Electron Instruments, a Swedish electronic instrument manufacturer, but has been empty since they left two years ago.

A potential user for the new building hasn’t yet been found.

The planning permission granted by the council allows for up to 60 new parking spaces and seven HGV bays.

Councillor Judith Mills told Torbay’s planning committee she was worried that, once finished, local traffic would increase, which she said is already a 'nightmare'.

Councillor Ray Hill described the current office buildings as 'hideous', adding: “It’s a commercial site in need of renovation and development so I don’t see any objections at all to this.”

Torbay Development Agency (TDA), which is owned by the council, is in favour of the development, saying it could boost employment and reduce anti-social behaviour in the area.

Torbay Neighbourhood Forum also supports the move.