Offices at Reading’s Broad Street Mall will be converted into 48 flats, adding to plans to build 422 flats above the shopping centre.

Plans from owners Inception Reading SARL to convert most of Fountain House, 2 Queens Walk, which looms above Broad Street Mall, into 48 apartments, were approved by the council this week.

The basement, ground, first, second, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth floors of Fountain House will change from offices to flats.

READ MORE: Reading town centre red route set to become permanent

There will be a mix of one, two and three-bed flats, 30 secure and covered cycle parking spaces and 20 additional parking spaces provided at basement level which can be used by visitors to the site and tenants of the University of West London, who will continue to occupy floors three, nine and 10.

Reading Borough Council (RBC) planning officers gave the go-ahead to the prior approval application on Monday.

Prior approval allows certain changes of use to buildings without the need for planning permission.

Councils can only dismiss a prior approval application for a limited set of reasons, such as noise, contamination or flooding concerns.

Earlier this year, three tower blocks of 422 flats above the shopping centre were given the final seal of approval.

READ MORE: Flats plan above Q-Club refused as developers carry out noise test during lockdown

The approved plans for 422 flats at Broad Street Mall include:

  • A 20-storey building containing 148 apartments next to the junction of Queens Walk and Dusseldorf Way
  • An 18-storey building containing 134 apartments next to Dusseldorf Way
  • An 18-storey building with 98 apartments and ground-floor shops next to Hosier Street
  • A five-storey building containing 42 apartments that will be accessed via Oxford Road

The council’s Planning Applications committee initially approved the plans in March 2020 but held of final approval until assurances were granted over improvements to the car park.

Broad Street Mall is currently up for sale, with Fountain House being advertised as having good potential to be converted into residential use.

There is also planning permission for a 101-room Premier Inn hotel to be built at the derelict Eva’s nightclub site on Hosier Street, while Blue Collar is setting up a new food and drinks market on Hosier Street.