A plan to more than double the number of prayer spaces available at a Preston mosque looks due to be approved.Advertisement
Preston Muslim Society had lodged the plans with the city council to convert two teaching rooms at its Watling Street Road, Fulwood, premises into ‘overflow prayer rooms’.
Masjid-e-Salaam, which is still a work in progress, could see up to 315 Muslims answering the call to prayer, compared with 145 on the original plans approved under appeal in 2011.
College ward councillors Bobby Cartwright and Harry Seddon have objected to the revised proposals, saying it will place too much strain on the road network.
Mosque leaders state in their plans they have agreed the use of the community centre car park on the opposite side of Watling Street Road to help ease any parking problems.
This would give a total of 113 spaces for workshippers at peak times.
Planning officers state the parking space per worshipper ratio would be better than in the previously approved plans for the mosque.
A statement from planning officers says: “Whilst objections have been received, the proposed variations of conditions are considered to be acceptable and in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Central Lancashire Core Strategy and the Preston Local Plan 2012-26 (Site Allocations and Development Management Policies). The proposal complies with the relevant provisions of the development plan and there are no material considerations which outweigh this finding.”
Related: Fulwood mosque owners table plans for new community centre
On the website about the redevelopment of the mosque, a statement says: “The availability of the extra car parking on the opposite side of Watling Street Road is an area that will never be redeveloped as it provides an important element and setting of a listed building.
“Overall, we consider that this planning approval now addresses all of the issues that have been raised and represents a wonderful opportunity to show that Preston can accommodate new good developments to enhance both a conservation area and to meet the needs of its multi-cultural residents.”
Councillors are due to hear the revised plans for the mosque on Thursday 10 March from 1.30pm at the Town Hall.
Do you live in the area? Will you use the mosque? What do you think of the plans? Let us know in the comments below