PLANS to transform an empty city office block into flats have been given the support of Wiltshire Council.

London-based Monopro lodged plans with the authority in September to create 51 mostly two and one-bed apartments in the former Capita building at 141 Castle Street.

The council has now given the developers the green light to allow for the building’s change of use but the company will not be able to start work until it has met the authority’s criteria for areas including parking, bin storage and flooding.

Within the consultation Wiltshire Council’s principal transport and development manager Robert Murphy said that despite concerns about the amount of parking he deemed that parking demand would be low due to the development’s city centre location.

He said: “The site is located in the centre of Salisbury where employment opportunities and services/facilities are readily accessible by non-car modes. In addition, sustainable travel options are available within acceptable walking distances to locations in other parts of Salisbury, Wiltshire and beyond.”

Mr Murphy added that any overspill of parking could be controlled by permits and ticket machines.

However, the number of parking spaces was deemed “detrimental” by nearby resident Jonathan Barlow, who, in a letter to the council, said: “The recently introduced residents only parking for zone A has marginally improved the situation during the day, however, there remain insufficient spaces during the evening and overnight.

“This development can only have a detrimental affect on the parking in our zone.”

The council added that developers would need to show how it would protect the proposed flats from noise from the railway and traffic on the bypass, as well as noise from traffic in Castle Street.

The application was also given the backing of the City Council but it raised concerns about the amount of flats, parking and bin storage.

The developers had applied for planning permission for 38 apartments in May last year, but withdraw the application in June after Wiltshire Council raised concerns over a lack of parking spaces.

It then returned in November last year with a new scheme that would have seen fewer people living in the same number of flats. This was given prior approval in December.

It is expected that the company will return with plans for parking, bin storage and flooding in the coming weeks.