New plans have been put forward to develop the vacant Lloyds Bank site on St Albans Road in Watford.
Fairfield Estate Agents wants to redevelop the former building into a mixed-use residential and commercial development.
The developer is proposing a coffee shop and estate agent premises on the ground floor. The remaining floors will house 21 flats – 10 x 1 bed and 11 x 2 bed flats.
No parking spaces or affordable units will be included in the development.
As part of the redevelopment proposal handed into the council, the listed Lloyds Bank building will be demolished to make way for an eight-story residential block set in the Nascot Conservation Area.
Lloyds Bank was built in 1928 and is a rare example of an art-deco style building with elements of neo-classical design still standing in Watford. The building forms part of a historic Nascot retail centre.
Nascot councillor Mark Hofman, said: “Lloyds Bank is a locally listed building, allowing demolition will set a dangerous precedent throughout the town and undermine the historical significance of the Nascot Conservation Area and other historical areas.
“Building such a density of flats at such a scale on that site will be a profound change to the environment of Nascot village. Many residents have contacted us to say that they care very deeply about the village conservation area and are protective of it.”
Jane Johnson added: “I think Fairfield Homes plans for Lloyds Bank will irrevocably change the landscape. Watford is being saturated with new flats; this plan does not even include any affordable units.
“It is important to provide high quality, affordable homes to help residents get on the property ladder. However, this must not come at the expense of our area’s character and history.”
Celia Rowbotham, secretary of the Nascot Residents Association, said: “The mass and bulk of the proposed building would be neither sympathetic nor a proportionate form of development and would be incongruous to the other residential buildings in the Nascot Conservation Area.
“I strongly object to the size and bulk of this building and the density of occupation on this extremely busy and (for pedestrians) dangerous junction.”
Nearly 20 Nascot households have already objected to the plans.
Residents can view and comment on the plans here: https://pa.watford.gov.uk/publicaccess/ and search for application ‘19/00835/FULM’.