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2,000 new homes for Felixstowe – 10 days left to make your views known

PUBLISHED: 11:00 03 September 2018 | UPDATED: 11:08 03 September 2018

The northern edge of Felixstowe could be designated as a new Garden Neighbourhood Picture: ARCHANT

The northern edge of Felixstowe could be designated as a new Garden Neighbourhood Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

Time is running short to give your opinions on proposals for a new “garden neighbourhood” on the edge of the town.

Gulpher Road will remain a 'Quiet Lane' and could be closed to traffic Picture: ARCHANTGulpher Road will remain a 'Quiet Lane' and could be closed to traffic Picture: ARCHANT

The project is being put forward by Suffolk Coastal District Council in its revised Local Plan and will see all the land between the Walton bypass, Candlet Road, and Gulpher Road developed.

The deadline for comments is September 14.

Part of this area under discussion – around 350 acres in total – already has planning permission for 560 homes.

However, Suffolk Coastal is working with developers and landowners to draw up a masterplan which will create a “garden neighbourhood” which stretches from the dock spur roundabout to Ferry Road in Old Felixstowe.

People have fought for years to save this area of countryside, which has been the natural boundary of the town.

Suffolk Coastal’s proposal suggests:

2,000 homes, including a mix of different sizes and affordable homes;

a new state-of-the-art leisure centre to replace Brackenbury, Felixstowe Leisure Centre and Eastward Ho;

Gulpher fields, Felixstowe, as a rider comes out of the mist Picture: PHIL GRIFFITHSGulpher fields, Felixstowe, as a rider comes out of the mist Picture: PHIL GRIFFITHS

new primary school with early years provision;

open space;

community hub, which could include convenience store, shops, medical facilities and meeting place;

at least two new access points off Candlet Road;

retirement homes including a care home and sheltered complex;

and employment land.

Hundreds of new homes are already under construction at Walton Green and in the Trimleys.

In its Local Plan, the district council says: “Large scale development through a Garden Neighbourhood is proposed for Felixstowe to enable the delivery of modern leisure facilities to meet the needs of the town as well as the District and beyond.

Christchurch Land and Estates' planned development of 560 homes and community facilities would be incorporated into a new masterplan Picture: CHRISTCHURCH LANDChristchurch Land and Estates' planned development of 560 homes and community facilities would be incorporated into a new masterplan Picture: CHRISTCHURCH LAND

“The current leisure provision at the Leisure Centre and Brackenbury Sports Centre, have reached the end of their useful life and need to be modernised. Felixstowe is the largest town in the District and has significant opportunities for future economic growth supported by the Port of Felixstowe, associated industries and tourism.

“Felixstowe is well served in respect of services and facilities but directing growth to this area will support the focus on the continued regeneration of the town as well as minimising the need to travel to access employment opportunities and essential services and facilities.”

Collaboration with landowners and partnership working with a range of stakeholders such as Suffolk County Council, Felixstowe Town Council and community groups will help draw up a masterplan for the Garden Neighbourhood – and a planning application will then be made for the whole site, in a similar way to the Adastral Park, Martlesham, development.

Talking about the leisure complex plan, the council says: “The existing leisure centres in Felixstowe are coming to the end of their operational life and the council

considers it necessary to redevelop these existing facilities with a new purpose built modern facility which will serve the community for future generations.

“A new modern facility will significantly improve the recreational facilities available to the local community as well as attracting visitors from outside of

Felixstowe.”

Because areas adjoining the site are designated as part of the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the council says it will be “essential” that the development includes “significant green infrastructure provision and areas of natural green space for recreation”, complementing the Grove woodland, existing public rights of way and hedgerows.

New vehicular junctions will need to be established to provide access from Candlet Road and ensure that Gulpher Road which is a designated ‘Quiet Lane’ is not used for vehicular access.

Tony Fryatt, Suffolk Coastal’s cabinet member with responsibility for planning, said: “This is an ambitious document, which lays out how we see the district developing in the future, so it is important that local people take this opportunity to have their say on the first draft plan, before the proposals go any further.”

Comments on the First Draft Local Plan can be submitted via:

The council’s online consultation portal

Email to suffolkcoastallocalplan@eastsuffolk.gov.uk

Or in writing to Planning Policy & Delivery Team, East Suffolk House, Station Road, Riduna Park, Melton, Woodbridge, IP12 1RT.

Consultation on the First Draft Local Plan ends at 5pm on Friday, September 14.

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