A Fishponds factory built in the 1930s could be knocked down to make way for 260 new homes. It’s one of three industrial sites in the Fishponds area up for consideration as Bristol City Council looks to address the housing shortage in Bristol.
Graphic Packaging International is applying for planning permission for 260 new homes on its Filwood Road site, as it prepares to move into its new factory in Yate.
Graphic Packaging International’s current site was built in the 1930s and is no longer suitable for the successful and expanding industrial business.
In 2011 the company secured planning permission to build homes on its current Filwood Road site but couldn’t find a new suitable facility to relocate to – and that permission has since lapsed.
But it has now secured a long-term lease on a 250,000 sq ft building at Great Western Business Park in Yate. The move will allow the business to expand its operations, creating 134 new additional jobs in the medium term.
The company is now seeking outline planning permission for its Filwood Road site for 260 new homes. Two thirds of the homes would be two, three and four bedroom houses, and the rest would be apartments.
A green, public open space is proposed for the centre of the site, with green pedestrian and cycling routes through the site and connecting with the Bristol to Bath Railway Path, the 15-mile off-road cycleway, part of the National Cycle Network.
The proposed scheme would be an outline application, meaning it only seeks permission for the main principles of the development, including the number of homes, green spaces and access points. If planning permission is granted Graphic Packaging International would sell the site to a housebuilder which would then apply for detailed permission.
Graphic Packaging International’s General Manager Martin Sheppard, said: “We’ve been at this site for a long time, but it was built in the 1930s and is simply no longer fit-for-purpose. We’ve planned this move for a long time and – finally – have secured a bespoke building on a long-term lease that will allow us to invest in significant growth that will create 100 new jobs in the medium term.
“Our Filwood Road site sits in the middle of a mainly residential area, with a primary school among our nearest neighbours. Running a large industrial business – with lots of HGVs coming in and out throughout the day – is not ideal. This location if far better suited to new homes.
“Securing planning permission for 260 new homes will allow us to invest in growth and job creation. It will also free up a large, urban, brownfield site for much-needed new homes to help address the ongoing housing crisis Bristol faces.”
Two neighbouring sites are also being proposed for new homes: the other sites are known as Castel Ltd, to the north of Goodneston Road, and Central Fishponds Ltd, which comprises the principle industrial buildings to the north of Filwood Road, including and surrounding Verona House.
The three landowners have joined together to produce a masterplan for the whole development undertaken by the Bristol team of award-winning landscape architect and urban designer McGregor Coxall.
The shared masterplan – for what is now being called Atlas Place – sets out some important key design principles.This includes creating a parkland edge to the railway path and transforming Goodneston Road into a green corridor through the middle of the development.
It would also ensure safe and attractive pedestrian and cycle routes through the site and ensure a range of green, public open spaces in key locations.
Graphic Packaging International is holding a public consultation event at its Filwood Road premises on Monday, March 27, from 2.30pm-7.30pm. Everyone is welcome.
A consultation on the masterplan has been running for the past few weeks and can still be seen at https://atlasplacefishpondsfuture.com/index.php.