Hillfields homeless centre gets planning permission

Thursday 07 February 2013 Updated: 07/02 17:20

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

PLANS for a new £6million homeless centre in Hillfields have been given the go ahead.

The city council's planning committee approved plans for the 63-room centre in Adelaide Street on Thursday.

Building work will start in the summer and will take around a year, Whitefriars Housing Association has confirmed.

The association also said it intended employ local people and hire apprentices who live in Hillfields to work on the project.

Efforts led by ward councillor Jim O'Boyle to block the centre from being built in Adelaide Street failed with the association rejecting claims it was not the best location.

Pat Brandum, chief executive of WM Housing Group, which Whitefriars is part of, said: "When we consulted with residents we found the vast majority believe there is a need for a new homeless facility in Coventry.

"We recognise some people are concerned about the location in Hillfields. We have listened and we will continue to listen to their worries, and we will use people’s opinions to help us shape our plans."

She added: "We are delighted the council has given us permission to develop a homeless centre of excellence and are convinced this is the right decision for the city as it will allow us to improve vulnerable people’s lives while serving the local community."

The centre will provide support services from Whitefriars and other organisations to prepare homeless people learn new skills and find jobs.

It is being part-funded by a £2.1m grant from the government’s Homes and Communities Agency.

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