Plans submitted to transform former Ipswich office into 75 flats

The HMRC building, Haven House in Lower Brook Street, Ipswich Picture: SIMON PARKER

The former HMRC building, Haven House in Lower Brook Street, Ipswich - Credit: Archant

Plans have been submitted to transform a former revenues office in Ipswich town centre into 75 new flats.

An application was submitted to Ipswich Borough Council to renovate Haven House in Lower Brook Street earlier this month.

If successful, the once HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) office – opposite Turret Lane – would become a mixture of studio, one-bed and two-bed flats, split across both buildings on site.

The majority of the flats, 41, would be be one-bedroom, while 20 would offer two bedrooms. The remaining 14 would be studios.

The existing 23-space car park would be reduced to 18 spaces as part of the plans, although four electric car charging points would be provided alongside the provision for the storage of up to 150 bicycles.

Developers have argued the switch from offices to residential flats would see a reduction of traffic in comparison, with those living within the town centre more likely to walk and cycle.

The plans – submitted by Haven House Ipswich Ltd – are currently pending consideration from Ipswich Borough Council.

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Built in the 1970s, the 40,494sq ft building is currently under offer after being listed for sale for just shy of £3million.

HMRC previously operated locally both from Haven House and St Clare House, however a move announced last year saw the government body occupy two and a half floors at Brooke Lawrence House in Civic Drive.

HMRC revealed at the time that the move, to the same building as insurance giants AXA, would see 97 job losses.

Speculation over the future of Haven House had been ongoing for several years before the switch, having been announced as one of 15 closures planned from 2015.

Plans for another large and redundant central Ipswich office, the former BT centre off Handford Road, have also been submitted by Ipswich Borough Council's commercial arm, Ipswich Borough Assets.

If successful, those plans would see the main building and surrounding site developed into a mix of 149 new flats and houses.

Attempts were made to contact the proposed developers for Haven House.

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