Textile factory to become housing
Plans are being drawn up for a former textile machinery factory to be turned into flats for the elderly.
The factory in St Saviours Road, North Evington, was the once the home to Wildt Mellor Bromley – in its day one of the largest manufacturers of knitting machines in the world.
Now, a number of small textile businesses use the ground floor and outlying units on the site.
The plans involve adding a fourth floor extension and creating 56 flats.
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The redevelopment, which is estimated to cost at least £2 million, would also involve the businesses moving out and the single-storey factory units on the site being demolished to make way for 54 parking spaces.
The building, at the junction with Drinkstone Road, is up for sale and the owner wants to sell the building to someone who would carry out the development.
The Leicester Mercury was unable to contact the owner but his agent, Kurosh Morad, confirmed the plan had been submitted.
Leo Properties in St Saviours Road is trying to find a buyer for the property.
Director Pradeep Sudera said: "The owner isn't going to develop it himself but wants to sell it with the planning permission for flats for the elderly.
"The plans are for an extra floor on top of the three-storey building and then the rest of it will be demolished for parking spaces."
An application for developing the site was made in 2007 and those plans were given outline planning permission in 2008.
They were for a slightly different plan, with the industrial building being extended to include the flats but also some space for factories.
At the time,Leicester City Council planning officers said that while the building was not earmarked as being in a residential area, the regeneration of the site outweighed the loss of employment land.
Neighbours said they had no problem with the development.
Sanea Musse said: "People need more homes around here so it would be a good thing.
"I don't think I'd have any problem with it being used for flats."
Adan Safi said: "It's a good idea. The building has been mostly empty since I moved here three years ago and I'd like to see something more done with it."
Businesses based in the building will have to move out if the development goes ahead.