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RUBBER STAMPED: Barker and Stonehouse coming near the Metro Centre

RUBBER STAMPED: Barker and Stonehouse coming near the Metro Centre

How the new Barker and Stonehouse store planned for land near the Metro Centre could look, Image: YEME Architects

A national furniture retailer’s plans to open a store near a Gateshead shopping centre have been rubber-stamped by the authority.

Barker and Stonehouse, which was founded in Stockton in 1946, was given permission by Gateshead Council to erect a new store on the Metro Centre retail park.

The council’s planning and development committee unanimously voted to approve the plans on Wednesday, which mean existing buildings on the site, west of Gibside Way, will be demolished to make way for the new building.

The councillors were following the recommendation of the authority’s planning department who said the application would redevelop the site.

The fresh unit will have an internal floor area of 4,333sqm boasting mezzanine floors with a terrace café incorporated into the rooftop.

A report to the authority’s planning committee said that the retailer wants to take advantage of an expected up-tick in furniture buying.

It said: “The proposals core catchment is defined as the extent of Gateshead and the proposal will help to stem leakage of expenditure to other areas (estimated at £134m in 2024).

“The assessment takes into account changes in population and
rates of expenditure, forecasting a growth of £35m in bulky goods expenditure by 2024, excluding any additional increases linked to housing growth in the borough.”

A design and access statement lodged with the council claimed the new store would improve the area.

It said: “The proposal will enhance the built environment of the Metro Centre, Metro Retail Park and wider area and has the potential to act as a catalyst and exemplar for future developments in the area.”

 

Words: Herbert Soden, Local Democracy Reporter


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