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    Portsmouth’s fourth One Stop store set to open in The Hard

    The ground floor of Brunel House in The Hard, Portsmouth has been proposed for a new One Stop store. (Photo: One Stop via LDRS)

    Years after the upper floors of the building were converted from offices into flats, plans for the ground floor convenience store at Brunel House in The Hard, Portsmouth are being progressed.

    A planning application has been submitted by One Stop to move into the former Ministry of Defence block by installing machinery needed to operate a food shop as well as an ATM.

    Should it open, it would be the convenience store chain’s fourth branch in Portsmouth.

    The rest of the building was controversially converted into flats beginning in 2019 under planning rules that allowed the work to take place without a full planning application being needed.

    Concerns were raised that this allowed many of the ‘rabbit hutch’ flats to be just half the size of minimum space standards set by the government.

    Work to create the 153 studio flats was completed last year after being delayed by the pandemic.

    In 2014 Bouygues Development proposed building a 40-storey block of flats on the site but its plans were abandoned after the scheme was rejected by a council planning committee the following year.

    Three planning applications have now been submitted for the conversion of the ground floor of the building: one for the installation of the new equipment and ATM, a second for One Stop branding to be put up across the front of the building and the third for a certificate of lawfulness for the use of the space.

    A heritage statement submitted with the application because the site falls within the Gunwharf conservation area and said the shop would not have a negative effect.

    “In order to occupy the ground floor areas of the building and for it to support the local community through the provision of a functional convenience store, the installation of refrigerators, freezers, etc are essential to ensure longevity of produce and foods within the store,” it says.

    “The proposals will have no detrimental effects on the conservation area of Gunwharf nor any of the listed buildings nearby.”

    The council has set deadlines over the coming weeks for it to reach decisions on the applications.

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