Ditched: Plans for £500k two bed flats in Luton town centre

The site on Flowers Way, Luton
The site on Flowers Way, Luton

A development firm that attempted to sell two bed flats in Luton for £500k has abandoned its plans.

In February the Luton News revealed that Sloane International Developers had gained conditional permission to build 130 flats and 359 student rooms on the car park opposite Whitbread House, Flowers Way.

The same day a listing was placed on property website Zoopla, advertising two-bedroom flats in the complex for £534,000 to £551,000.

The properties were also said to be “located close to one of the world’s leading financial districts and in one of the most cosmopolitan areas of London”.

Re/max Property Centre, which marketed the flats to investors in China and Malaysia, took the advert down and blamed a ‘typographical error’.

Now, nine months later, it appears that Sloane International Developments has ditched its plans for the site altogether as it is now on the market for £7million.

An advert on comparison site Zoopla lists the site for sale by London-based estate agency Manolia Homes.

Tom Shaw, Luton Borough Council’s housing portfolio holder, said that at £7m the site is still overpriced.

Cllr Shaw told the Luton News: “If they were prepared to accept a reasonable sum one of our partners could talk to them but at that valuation the council would have to charge £200 a week in rent just to break even.

“People say to me every week that the council should be building on brownfield sites, but like this one on Flowers Way everything has already got planning permission.

“It is causing us a major problem as the levels of rent have gone way above the local housing allowance (housing benefit).”

Cllr Shaw added: “Properties in Luton have gone barmy lately– in Lewsey Farm you won’t see any homes for less than £200k or one bedroom flats for less than £150k.”