Landlord's bid to help fill Square
A CITY centre landlord has called for planning restrictions to be relaxed in a bid to encourage new retailers.
Aviva Investors owns two blocks in Trinity Square which contain 14 units.
Since the units were completed in 2007, more than half have remained empty.
The firm has now asked Nottingham City Council to allow the units to be used for purposes other than retail.
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In a statement submitted with its application, Aviva said: "The development of Trinity Square coincided with the onset of the economic crisis. This has had a stifling effect on the retail and leisure market and, as a consequence, a number of the units have remained unoccupied.
"The granting of planning permission will enable the wider marketing of the units so that potential tenants have a greater choice of units for occupation."
The two blocks are separated by Burton Street. The South block only has one unit occupied – by Harvester – while the North block contains PC World, TK Maxx, Cafe Nero, Waitrose and Cosmo.
Units in the North block can only be used for shops. Aviva has asked the council to give permission for four of them to also be available to financial and professional services, or restaurants and cafes and bars.
It also wants three to be allowed to house clinics, health centres, crèches or takeaways.
In the South block, three units have permission for restaurants and cafes and the other three for shops.
Aviva wants all units to have permission for shops, financial and professional services, restaurants and cafes and bars.
In addition to asking for greater flexibility in how it use the units, the company is considering creating three extra units by dividing some of the existing spaces.
The supporting statement continues: "Clearly, the vitality and viability of the Trinity Square development has been strongly affected by the economic crisis and this is borne out by the fact that the relevant units, the subject of this application, have remained (with the exception of Harvester) vacant, despite this being a high quality, multi-million-pound investment in a key city centre site."