Bid To Turn Great West House into Storage Facility

Owner wants flexibility to switch from office space

Great West House in Brentford. Picture: Maxwell Hamilton
Great West House in Brentford. Picture: Maxwell Hamilton

February 15, 2024

An application (P/2024/0008) has been made to allow part of a landmark Brentford building to be turned into storage units.

The owners of Great West House at 993 Great West Road want permission for a change of use for the taller tower of the two buildings in the complex (GW2). They say this will allow them the flexibility to ensure that the building is used while at the same time enabling a switch back to office space should the demand for lettings recover maximising the opportunities for the building to be fully occupied. It is acknowledged that a lot of the existing floor space is currently vacant.

The building is over 60 years old and sits on a 3.2 acre site next to the M4.

Discussions were held in previous years with the council’s planning team about a scheme to demolish the buildings and build a mixed development with 550 flats and 5,000 sq m of office space.

The planners said they would be unlikely to support a proposal of this nature because it would lead to a reduction of the office space on the site from the present 13,900 sq m.

Last year revised proposals were drawn up which maintained the employment uses of the site and the council planning team indicated that this would be more agreeable.

The application was submitted immediately after the approval of a large storage facility on the Great West Road near the junction with Ealing Road. Plans provided with the application suggest that the intention is to convert the lower eleven floors of the seventeen storey building. The units on each floor would be a variable sizes to cater for the varied needs of customers.

It is argued in a planning statement that demand for storage space, particularly from smaller businesses in the area, was very high and this met with the council’s ambition to encourage economic activity along the Golden Mile.

No external changes are proposed to the existing buildings and the applicant says that the proposal would preserve the existing character of the site and wider area.

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