We’re more than a little puzzled….

The scaffolding outside the former Stacks shop in the High Street has acquired a large banner advertising ‘Crafttech’.  We’re pretty sure that Crafttech is a furniture business based in Sandhurst, so it’s relatively local.  But the last we heard was that the building – when it has been redeveloped – will be occupied by Wok and Go.

Pehaps Crafttech will be supplying the furniture for the new restaurant??

Kings Court

A while ago, we suggested that work to convert Kings Court – the office block next to the level crossing – into flats had ground to a halt.

But a few weeks ago we were tempted to report otherwise.  There was clearly some activity underway on the site.  However, since then everything seems to have come to a halt again.  When we waked past the building the other day, the entrance gates were closed.  We wonder what’s happening – or not happening.

 

Proliferating flats

Last December, we wrote about what was then a new planning application to convert Compass House on the A30 into forty one flats.

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This was no great surprise – converting office blocks into flats has become commonplace.  Moreover, it’s no great surprise to discover that a subsequent application has now been submitted which proposes that the building can be converted into forty five flats rather than the previous forty one.

Last time we pointed out that the development would provide 0.8 parking spaces per available per flat. We didn’t dispute that this would comply with ‘regulations’, but we questioned whether it would be enough in practice.  Pretty obviously, the A30 isn’t a suitable place for any ‘overspill’ on-road parking.  However, the proposed increased number of flats inevitably decreases the parking provision – to 0.73 spaces per flat.

Now we’re all encouraged to cycle more, and drive less.  But, though Compass House might be classified as a ‘town centre location’, there’s no simple cycle route between it and Camberley station.    So expecting residents to ‘get on their bike’ would be pretty naive.

High Street improvement

We all know that parts of the High Street look a mess.  So it’s good news that the borough council meeting tonight will consider  “[addressing] the appearance of the area by funding and implementing physical improvements to the front elevations of existing independent businesses to create attractive, thriving town and district centres that people are proud of, that customers want to visit and will encourage further investment by the existing businesses themselves.” 

The ‘Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme’ – called the Kevin Cantlon Fund, after the late Economic Development Officer – will have £100,000 allocated to it in 2017/18 if the council approves the proposal.

We wonder how the council will administer the fund.  Some retailers have a better track record of maintaining their premises than others.  Will the ‘slackers’ be given preferential treatment by the fund?  Would this be fair?  What about retail premises that have planning permission for redevelopment?  Who will decide what is visually-acceptable?  Will any retailer who closes their shop shortly after benefitting have to reimburse the council if the shop front is changed by a future tenant?……  We watch with interest.

Mex Burritos – the proof

We’ve already commented elsewhere that Mex Burritos will be moving into the former Subway shop in the High Street entrance to the Mall.  Well, here’s the proof….  The new name appeared on the boarded-up premises a few days ago.

We know virtually nothing about the firm, but here’s a link to Mex Burritos in Basingstoke: http://www.mexburritos.co.uk/