The building, at 8-9 Iron Gate in the city centre, closed four years ago after the store went bust. Bennetts had traded since the mid-18th century and claimed to be the world’s oldest department store.
After sitting empty for four years, the five-storey building will now be redeveloped to provide new retail, commercial and residential space.
The scheme, by Manston Investments, has been designed by architects JSA Consulting with cost consultants Armsons Barlow and heritage planners Urban Fabric.
The ground floor will be divided into two separate retail units with the first floor combining retail and office space.
The second and third floors will be converted into eight apartments
Part of the building to the rear of number 8 Iron Gate will be demolished to provide secondary access and improve daylight to the upper floors. The total floor area of the proposed development will be approximately 30,000 sq ft.
Manston Investments director Tom Boardman-Weston said: “This has been a lengthy process due to the historic single use nature of the building and also the Grade II-listed status of number nine Iron Gate. Repurposing the floorspace to attract a range of current day uses more readily has been a complicated task, but we are delighted that a way forward is now clearer.”