PLANS to build almost 300 homes in an “iconic” high rise block at the former

Staples store site have been revealed.

Developer GS8 plans to build a ten storey block of 298 homes and 380 square metres of shop space at the site of the old Staples stationery shop in Great Oaks in Basildon.

It wants to build homes for first time buyers and deliver a new iconic building.

The proposals are part of Basildon Council’s master plan which includes 4,000 homes, a 5,000 seat arena and much more.

Labour council leader Gavin Callaghan said: “The thing with this site is its the gateway to the town and is the first thing you see coming from Pitsea into Basildon Town Centre.

“It will be vital that it’s a unique and exciting gateway for the town centre.

“It must be an exciting building as it links up the town centre.

“It will be mixed use like all the town centre development and it will mean at all four corners of the town centre there is regeneration.”

As part of the early presentation documents, the developer says: “The provision of one and two bedroom units will ensure first time buyers local to the area are not priced out of the market.

“Quality of the architecture and communal spaces is vitally important to the scheme, we are looking to create an iconic building with high levels sustainable credentials with an aesthetic to match.

“There will be an element of retail/commercial/community space at ground floor which will tie in with proposed mixed commercial spaces from neighbouring developments.”

The early proposals show open top and roof top gardens with cafes and outdoor eating spaces on the ground floor.

It says: “The landscape proposal being developed will offer a variety of different spaces at various levels throughout the scheme from the ground floor public realm to the podium garden which will be a space to relax in nature.”

“Parking will take place at ground floor, an area of public realm will surround the site with a raised podium garden at first floor level accessed from the public realm at the south of the site.”