Category Archives: Planning

£300m plan to regenerate Preston Barracks approved

From The Argus

The £300 million transformation of a Georgian barracks site is set to go ahead after developers were given planning permission.

The University of Brighton proposal was unanimously approved by Brighton and Hove City Council’s planning committee yesterday.

Developers U+I will carry out the work to regenerate Preston Barracks in Lewes Road and the university’s Moulsecoomb campus.

The regeneration of Preston Barracks is predicted to generate £500 million for the city economy and create around 1,500 jobs, according to the university’s vice chancellor Debra Humphris.

Plans for the site, which has been derelict for 20 years, include building 369 homes, 1,338 student bedrooms and a new home for the university’s business school before 2021.

Professor Humphris said: “The university has been part of the city for 150 years.

“This development will go a considerable way to reducing pressure on local housing and reduce the need for cars and travel.

“We are committed to improving sustainability. It will provide a stunning new gateway into the city.”

The designs have undergone months of public consultation resulting in a number of objections. Among them are questions over the project’s viability, air pollution created by increased car parking and traffic, transport and congestion, lack of affordable housing and the effect it will have on Saunders Park View and Coombe Road residents.

During the meeting yesterday, Rebecca Barkaway, a member of the Coombe Road Area Local Action Team, said: “We are being transformed into the university’s campus.

“In an area that is already overwhelmed by a student community this just seems a step too far.

“We want to see investment in local provisions.

“We believe the 369 non-student houses should have a covenant placed on them so they don’t become HMOs.

“We also want to see money spent on improving the Saunders Park area.”

Environmental campaign group Brighton and Hove Friends of the Earth (BHFOE) objected to the proposed increase in parking across the development.

The group argued it would lead to increased traffic and air pollution. The group claimed that if built the development would keep air pollution levels above the legal limit.

More than 400 responses were received supporting the development before the meeting.

The original proposal was revised to include 19 additional homes, a reduction in the height of certain buildings, additional community facilities and a transport plan.

A new pedestrian bridge across Lewes Road will be built as well as new squares and crossings which are designed to improve pedestrian access.

Cycle docks and more than 1,000 cycle parking spaces are included in the plans, as well as 30 spaces for bicycles used as part of the city’s new bike hire scheme.

In March, the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner requested more money to cover the cost of more officers and staff set up costs, investment in IT operations, additional vehicles and the cost of supporting additional officers, as a result of the proposed development.

Andy Taylor, who represented the commissioner at the meeting, repeated the submission for £217,336 to fund the cost of extra policing to accompany the development.

The planning committee agreed not to support the request for more money to fund extra policing.

Richard Upton, deputy chief executive of U+I, said: “This is a major milestone for the Preston Barracks project, one of the largest and most ambitious regeneration projects to have been brought forward in Brighton for a number of years.

“We have the opportunity to transform this area of Brighton, which has been derelict for 20 years and deliver a huge number of benefits to the local community and the wider city.

“Our Circus Street project is also moving forward at great pace, regenerating another important part of the city.

“We will deliver world class, imaginative urban design on each project, building on the bohemian audacity of the Prince Regent and leaving a lasting legacy that befits such an inspirational city.”

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End is nigh for ugliest building in Sussex

From The Argus

Anston House

The clock is ticking for Sussex’s ugliest building as its demolition date draws closer.

Demolition of the infamously unaesthetic landmark Anston House, which has been leering over Preston Park in Brighton since 1969 and been vacant for almost two thirds of its existence, is due to begin later this year.

It looks set be the first of three developments worth £100 million whose construction has been held up by red tape and complex negotiations since they were given the green-light in December.

In total, the three developments, which include Station Street in Brighton and the former Texaco garage in Kingsway, Hove, will deliver almost 300 new homes, 10,000 square metres of business space and nearly 1,000 jobs on sites that have been derelict for more than half a century combined.

The planning committee decisions to grant consent to the three projects, all in excess of seven storeys, was greeted with criticism and derision in some quarters by campaigners who claimed the schemes would set a precedent for the city to be transformed into “Croydon-on-sea”.

Anston House developers First Base have been involved in complex discussions with Brighton and Hove City Council over Section 106 agreements with site preparation underway as the developers deal with a number of issues including slow worms.

But haters of the building will not get the chance for a cathartic moment watching the structure being blown to the ground. Instead its demolition will be a gradual process over a number of weeks.

The construction of its replacement will take the best part of two years, with residents due to move in in 2019.

The site next to the King Alfred in Hove is said to be “under construction” though the fenced-off site has not altered since the petrol station closed in 2015.

A nine-storey block of 55 flats and the redevelopment of the 109-year-old Alibi pub are planned for the site by Rocco Homes, which has four projects in the pipeline around Worthing, including 32 apartments in Chapel Road and 76 flats in The Causeway in Durrington.

For the long derelict corner site of Station Street, currently used as an ad-hoc car park, a seven-storey grade A office block has been granted consent.

Developer McAleer & Rushe will announce later this year when work is set to begin on the site.

A First Base spokeswoman said: “We are excited about the possibilities for Anston House which has been derelict for too long. We are in the final stages of completing the Section 106 planning agreement and have been carrying out preliminary survey work ahead of construction. It is hoped that work will start in the near future.”

 

Historic Victorian building to be transformed into 25 apartments

From The Argus

A building used to train up scores of builders over the years is now to receive its own makeover to give it a new lease of life.

The former City College construction and trades centre in Preston Road, Brighton, is set to be transformed into 25 apartments.

Work on the transformation of the locally listed Victorian red-brick property is expected to start within the next five months and be completed by the end of next year.

Brighton-based Yelo Architects said the conversion would give house hunters the rare opportunity to secure a loft apartment in the city.

The scheme, which was granted planning consent by Brighton and Hove City Council planning committee last week, involves a mixture of one, two and three bedroom apartments.

Developers Aligned Property bought the site in October after it became surplus to the requirements of Greater Brighton Metropolitan College, formed from the merger of City College and Northbrook College.

A new £9 million training centre opened at its East Brighton campus in Wilson Avenue, Brighton, in April.

The building was used by Preston Road School for more than 50 years before its closure in 1937. It was later taken over by the Brighton Junior Technical Institute.

City regeneration council officers backed the proposal to convert the site into housing because the building had “passed its usefulness” as an educational centre.

Heritage officers, who described the 1870 building’s gables and tall chimneys as a notable feature of the city skyline, also backed the plans after later amendments.

Forty per cent of the new apartments will be affordable, five affordable rent and five shared ownership, and the scheme will also bring more than £130,000 of improvements to nearby open spaces, schools and indoor sport facilities.

The renovation will not alter the scale of the existing building but will require external renovations to replace windows and restore the original school bell while a pre-fabricated building at the rear of the site will be removed.

Andy Parsons, founder and director of Yelo Architects, said: “It is a beautiful building. We need to do very little but just reveal that beauty again.

“It has come to the end of its life as a college building because they are relocating but it will work really well as beautiful loft apartments.

“Loft apartments are not that common in Brighton so it will be a rare product coming on to the market.

“There will be little change to the exterior of the building but we will be replacing all the windows, putting the railings back in and carrying out work to the roof.

Signalman flats application withdrawn – steps application still stands

ditchlingrisebrighton

With the number of objections nearing 200 – some coming from Seagulls fans and as far away as Worthing, the agents have withdrawn the planning application to build flats on The Signalman garden. This is excellent news for the community and near neighbours of the pub – and welcomed by Drara and and everyone who objected. However, the application for steps from the pub to the yard at the rear of the pub stands – and neighbours behind the pub are concerned about overlooking and the harsh, intrusive LED lighting that has been installed on the walls here and future implications this might have for use of the yard – as a garden? – target decision date for this tomorrow – 15th May – so still time (just) to comment on this application here.

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Complaint re 140-146 Springfield Road Planning Application

From: Robert Rosenthal <drrosenthal@hotmail.com>

Sent: 22 March 2017 16:17
To:liz.hobden@brighton-hove.gov.uk
Cc:robin.hodgetts@brighton-hove.gov.uk; Leo Littman; Julie Cattell; Sonia.Gillam@brighton-hove.gov.uk; ‘Edward White’; Sylvia Peckham; caroline.lucas.mp@parliament.uk; ‘Grenville Nation’

Subject: 140-146 Springfield Road

Dear Ms Hobden

I write to express concern over your department’s management of the planning conditions relating to the plot of land between the Open House pub on Springfield Road and the railway line. There are clear S106 conditions relating to this permission, insisting on the sensitive relocation of slow worms before the commencement of development.

A critical question throughout has been ‘what constitutes commencement?’ When the developers breached the wall (which is not part of the development area and is not the property of the developer as legal documents in our possession show) to gain access and clear all vegetation from the site, we were told by Cllr Cattell that it was well established in planning circles  that commencement is marked by the breaking of ground for foundation work. Therefore we were told this demolition and vegetation clearance did not represent ‘commencement’ and so was not a breach of the S106 conditions. Therefore no action could be taken to prevent the vegetation clearance.

Now Mr Hodgetts and Ms Gillam tell us that commencement was marked by the breaching of the wall and vegetation clearance. In this case the S106 conditions have clearly been breached in which case the council had then -and has now- an obligation to take action to prevent all development until they have been met. It is a perverse twist of logic to argue retrospectively and in addition, that S106 conditions ‘ aren’t impacted by the demolition of the wall … and are still possible to discharge’. While the breaching of the wall may not of itself be seen as damaging to slow worm population, it is surely beyond dispute that the subsequent clearance of the vegetation has represented a deliberate destruction of the habitat that supports slow worm existence in spite of ongoing investigation and discussion of the status of the slow worm community. This represents a legal offence according to the definition provided by Ms Gillam, as the developers have in so doing ‘intentionally kill(ed) or injure(d) a slow worm(s)’.   The developers’ actions have violated the spirit as well as the letter of planning conditions.

I am sorry to say that in this case council officers seem to have provided more support and succor for the developer than they have acted as guardians of the local community interest. And it comes as a shocking coup de grace for Ms Gillam to write that ‘The ownership of the wall is irrelevant in terms of commencement of development’ and for Mr Hodgetts to announce that he has now closed the enforcement case as there are ‘no enforceable breaches’.

I request that you intervene personally to investigate your officers’ handling of this case, that the case remain open and that public concerns be given the serious consideration that they deserve. Enforcement is now urgently required to ensure no further development take place until all conditions have been met.

Yours sincerely

Robert Rosenthal (Chair – Southdown Rise Residents’ Association)


Nicola Hurley’s letter in response to Rob’s complaint – BHC-025706 Springfield Road

The Signalman – Flats proposed in place of beer garden

ditchlingrisebrighton

siggygarden.jpg largeOwners of our neighbourhood pub submitted two planning applications for the alteration of the premises in March.

Development of ‘former beer garden’ into flatsApplication number: BH2017/00829
On March 9th a planning application was submitted by Inn Brighton Properties Ltd to erect a 3 storey building containing 3 two bedroom flats on what the application states is the ‘former beer garden of The Signalman public house, now disused.’ To date objections have been submitted by immediate neighbours of the pub who have been consulted, stating their concerns about overlooking, loss of light, loss a rare community open space in the area and detrimental impact on adjoining in buildings. In addition they express surprise, as do we, that it is claimed to be a ‘former’ pub garden.
This application is due for decision on May 22nd

Installation of staircase to rear yard –Application number: BH2017/00920
On March 16th an…

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