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Developer showcases flats plan for historic launderette

Key features of an old launderette could be retained as part of plans to transform the former business into homes.

Members of the public were able to view plans for the Clean dry cleaners site, in Furze Platt Road, on Tuesday at Furze Platt Memorial Hall.

The laundry site, which was in use for more than 130 years and closed in August, is expected to be flattened to make way for 65 flats.

However, recognisable parts of the building, including a clock and sign, could be retained.

The plans are expected to be submitted to the Royal Borough in the coming months.

Developer Ashill, based in Wimbledon, South-west London, claims the plans could even help ease traffic congestion in the area because of a cutback in commercial use.

Ashill’s planning manager Tracy Puttock said: “At every site we have there’s an issue with traffic. But in terms of traffic generation, because this is an existing site, it’s recognised there’s an amount of traffic that will be generated anyway. And this plan actually comes out with slightly less traffic and less heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).”

In its current form, apartments on offer are expected to be a mix of one and two-bedrooms, with one parking space for each property and an extra 10 for visitors.

Entry to the site will be from Malvern Road and St Peter’s Road, although there will be no access for vehicles across the site, meaning drivers will not be able to use the development as a ‘rat run’ to avoid traffic.

Solicitor Vanessa Ryan, of Norfolk Road, who was viewing the plans, said: “I don’t have any objections actually. I just think it’s a prime site and [Malvern Road] is very small for industrial use anyway.

“Personally, I think it would be better to move industrial sites off residential areas and to somewhere more appropriate for HGVs.”

However, she added she had concerns about the impact on schools.

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