Whitefriars to push ahead with homeless hostel in Hillfields

Monday 19 November 2012 Updated: 22/11 11:52

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How the centre would look if built on industrial land in Adelaide Street, Hillfields (s)

WHITEFRIARS is to press ahead with its plan to build a £6m homeless centre in Hilfields.

The housing association today (Monday) ruled out an alternative site to the one it had identified in Adelaide Street last month.

The unidentified land was put forward by ward councillors Jim O'Boyle and Naeem Akhtar, and MP Jim Cunningham at a meeting with bosses two weeks ago.

Kevin Willetts, executive director development at WM Housing Group, which Whitefriars is part of, said: "We met recently and they agreed that a new homeless facility is needed in Coventry and proposed an alternative nearby Hillfields site.

"We looked into the proposed location, but unfortunately the site was far too large and the owners were not willing to parcel of a section of the land ahead of wider disposal.

"We met with councillor O’Boyle, councillor Akhtar and Mr Cunningham again today to inform them of our findings and our decision.

"This process has helped to confirm to us that, after months of research, this location is the best available place for our planned homeless facility.

A planning application for Adelaide Street will now be submitted to the city council.

Mr Willetts added: "We recognise there are some concerns about this project, as well as local support, and we intend to continue our consultation process with people and organisations within the neighbourhood to ensure that our plans are as robust as possible."

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