Bid to turn empty Sunderland restaurant into HMO

Plans have been lodged for a new house in multiple occupation (HMO) in Sunderland city centre.

Friday, 14th January 2022, 7:14 am

Sunderland City Council’s planning department has received an application for 1 Olive Street.

The proposals include a range of works to the ground floor of the building, which already has permission to operate as a restaurant.

This included a new shop front, the demolition of single-storey rear yard areas and the construction of a single-storey extension, with an aim of providing a function room, toilets and kitchen facilities.

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The empty Olive Street building which could be turned into a HMO.

The planning application also proposes converting the first floor and attic areas to create a six-bedroom HMO with “associated facilities”.

A design and access statement, submitted with the application, states the site is currently vacant and has previously been used as a restaurant on the ground floor with bedrooms above.

The new plans aim to bring the building back into use as it is in a “poor state of repair and is in need of complete refurbishment”.

The design and access statement goes on to say: “The ground floor area will be refurbished with a new shop front to Olive Street and remain as a restaurant.

“The first floor and attic will be converted into a self-contained HMO consisting of six lettable rooms with a lounge, kitchen, bathrooms and toilet accommodation suitable for the number of lettable bedrooms.

“The works will be carried out in accordance with guidance for landlords on HMO Standards in Sunderland produced by Sunderland City Council.”

Sunderland City Council licences HMOs where five or more people forming two or more households share or lack a basic amenity such as a bathroom, toilet or kitchen.

Floor plans for the proposed HMO at Olive Street include six bedrooms, shared kitchen and bathroom facilities and a communal lounge area.

Planning documents also confirm that ‘separate bin storage facilities’ will be provided for the restaurant and the HMO in the rear yard area.

A decision on the planning application is expected to be made by the middle of next month.

For more information on the scheme, visit Sunderland City Council’s online planning portal and search reference number 21/02931/FUL