500 homes planned in Bath on site of former Homebase

500 homes could be built in Bath, a stone’s throw from the city centre, amid plans to redevelop the former Homebase.

The huge homeware and hardware shop shut in 2020 and the 4.5 acre site — located just across the bridge from Sainsbury’s and Green Park Station — is now just a large concrete slab. But now developers hope to turn it into a new neighbourhood with 200 “shared living” homes and 300 other homes.

HUB, a developer specialising in co-living, has held multiple public exhibitions of their plans for the site in recent months, which they are calling the “Pines Way Redevelopment.” Exhibition boards said: “We want to transform the site into a vibrant mixed use community space, comprising professionally-managed rental homes, affordable housing, commercial and retail spaces, enhanced public realm areas and new pedestrian and cycle routes.”

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Planning permission had previously been granted in 2021 to build a 288-unit care complex on the site. Bath and North East Somerset Council rejected the plans but approval was won on appeal from the planning inspectorate, however the development never happened.

No planning application for HUB's plan has yet been submitted but it has submitted a request to the council for whether an environmental impact assessment is needed — generally the first step in the planning process before an application goes in. Plans shown in exhibitions show two larger and two smaller blocks planned, with planting on wide streets and squares around them.

Buildings would range from two to six storeys in height, although exact plans for the buildings could change when a planning application is submitted. Homes would range from one to three bedrooms in size, either available for shared living or constructed as “build to rent.”

HUB’s exhibition boards described the shared living concept as “a lifestyle choice centred around sharing.” They stated: “Studio homes are well designed and furnished for one and two people with communal spaces at the heart of the proposals to foster a community.

“Residents will have access to a number of necessary spaces with a variety of facilities such as laundry rooms, post collection boxes, large meeting/dining rooms and workout spaces. Shared Living is an emerging housing type that offers an alternative to either a house share (HMO), which may be poorly managed and have limited access to shared space.”

The other homes will be “build to rent” homes, owned by a single company and available to rent, but also with additional facilities not available at most standard rented properties such as gyms, shared lounges, and gardens.

Up to 1,400 square metres of commercial space is also planned as part of the development, planned to be clustered in one area. Exhibition boards said: “We believe a commercial hub will create a focal point for community interaction and activity but away from more sensitive residential areas.”

A planning application is planned to be submitted in the autumn.

You can view HUB’s plans for the development here.

You can view the request for an environmental impact assessment screening opinion here.