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£4.3m plans go in for Sports Direct town store

£4.3m plans go in for Sports Direct town store

Tuesday 30 October 2018

£4.3m plans go in for Sports Direct town store

Tuesday 30 October 2018


Plans have gone in for a £4.3 million redevelopment of the old BHS building to make way for two stores, including a Sports Direct, as well as a café, with a mobile art installation on the facade.

The building located at the corner of King Street and Don Street has been occupied by USC since 2016.

It was bought by Flannels Fashion for £18million after BHS' collapsed. In September 2017, Sports Direct took full ownership of the chain of high-end designer stores which has been operating throughout the UK since 1976, with which it be sharing the renovated space.

The plans drawn up by Axis Mason architects include a complete refurbishment of the store and a remodel of the facade. They also include the addition of a third floor aimed to bring the building to the same level as others on King Street.

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Pictured: Flannels Fashion bought the old BHS building for £18 million in 2016. 

As the building hasn't been remodelled since the early 1960s, the architects noted that the materials used are quite dated. They are therefore suggesting changing these for stone facades painted in neutral colours, which they say will "enhance the character and appearance of the town centre" and "be considerably more aesthetically pleasing than its predecessor." 

The second floor of the building will be split into a separate retail unit - likely to be luxury brand store Flannels, according to plans - which will be accessed from a new stairwell located on the corner of the building. Plans also include leaving room for a possible separate coffee shop on the ground floor on Don Street.

As part of their application, the developers have been asked to make a £1,000 contribution to the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) to install new cycle hoop stands on Don Street.

Video: The façade of the Oxford Street Debenhams store, which inspired the creation of a kinetic art installation on the King Street store facade. 

They have also vowed to make a £30,000 'Percentage for Arts' contribution in the form of a 'kinetic facade' inspired by the one on Debenhams' Oxford Street store.

Designed by Archial Architects, it includes a cladding screen made up of 185,000 aluminium shingles which can move independently with the flow of wind to create a fluid or ripple effect across the entire surface. 

At a time where a number of town retailers are struggling, Axis Mason said the redevelopment of the building, which sits at a prominent corner on King Street,  represents "a significant investment into the core retail area and is a vote of confidence in the town centre which will increase retail floor space and stimulate further regeneration."

However, the plans will only be able to go ahead if they get approval from Planning. A decision is expected in the coming months.

Pictured: The proposed view of the store from King Street. (Axis Mason)

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