The Sackville Estate redevelopment – aspirational plans/a tinker with new thinking

Moda intend to submit a planning application any time now, but no fine detail or nailed down solutions were available at the exhibition of plans in September.  Further to yesterday’s post, I detail info gleaned and noted down in my little book while there.  More detail of what to expect if an application is registered soonish.

Access and Egress are key issues to be resolved

One very nice potential increase in site access is drawn into the scheme in the form of a wide staircase from Sackville Road, located down towards the bridge area with walking through from there OR  (potentially, and ONLY potentially) a pedestrian bridge over the tracks, providing pedestrian access to Hove Station from Sackville Road.  Crucial in my view.  Crucial.  There is NO access/egress point from the site into or out of Newtown Road because buying people out to achieve it is either unavailable or unaffordable.  People there KNOW how much a space is needed by the Sackville Estate for a feasible redevelopment that isn’t going to be another dangerous one way in and out Marina situation.  Plans proceed in hopes that one day…..  In the meantime pedestrian access permeability is being sought on Sackville Road.

POTENTIAL ONLY pedestrian entry point from Sackville Road. At present it is this OR a pedestrian bridge over the tracks. Both are vitally needed infrastructure improvements to enable ANY scheme on this site to work.

The geology of the site is an issue.  The drop from Old Shoreham Road to the bridge is 7 metres.  The steep sides of the built-up estate land on the Sackville Road pavement side are a good 3-4 metres high so the set of stairs would need to be shallow and reach quite deep into the site to be reasonable.  So who will invest in one or, preferably both, of these infrastructure provisions?

Network Rail

It won’t be parsimonious Network Rail.  Indeed they charged Moda Living an absolute mountain of money just to have a first meeting to discuss the problem of finding a way to deal with the problem the railway lines have become, blocking north/south access and egress on foot or in vehicles.  Perhaps it is time the Government stepped in and helped the city with this one.  It is vital they do in fact.  This is the identified point that could be made to work.

POTENTIAL ONLY. Aspirational and would be this OR a Sackville Road stairway access up to the site. Not both, but both are vitally required

The railway came here in 1841 when it still had urban fringe/countryside to go over.  Now we are built right up to the Downs and the railway bi-sects the entire city in a way that needs to be specifically addressed as a specific infrastructure project.  Connecting the railway lines with an underground system is one solution that comes to mind (if we don’t end up under the sea again, as this area once WAS).
My wish to see a tertiary Hove Station outpost on Sackville Road with trackside facilities to walk past on the way to where the trains stop (or maybe inside the Sackville Estate where remnant rail lines remain in situ) is something Network Rail could  discuss with the city and Moda.  At present Moda are not looking at trackside access, but rather to put tall buildings along the entire trackside section over to a proposed parking strip abutting rail line ends, close by Fonthill Road.
There were 18 flats displaying vague drawings and concepts without fine detail.  Lots of PR level text.  Here are my rough notes from the visit…made as I looked at each one.
  1. Moda Living introduction/PR spiel
  2. Moda retirement introduction/PR spiel
  3. Intro to Hove Station Quarter  – site to be redeveloped consists of 3.59 ha or 8.8 acres
  1. Context, community
  2. Connectivity   – The  Council drawing of DA6 from City Plan pt 1, regrettably still showing trackside allocation of area for Waste Transfer.  This was bought by Coal Pensions and added to the Sackville Trading Estate holding, forcing removal of the designation by BHCC for eventual Waste Transfer use.
  1. Hove Station Neighbourhood Forum PR (Cttee of Fonthill area men, more like)
  2. Moda intentions   600-650 flats to rent, managed  by Moda Living.  If given planning consent, they will buy the site from Coal Pensions.  At the top end of the site, Mayfield will manage a 250-265 leasehold-bought semi-sheltered flats for the   elderly, with ground floor resources like hairdressers.  5,000 sq metres of employment space is also in the overall scheme.  There would be 20% car parking spaces of 280-300 plus 1,000 cycle parking spaces on site.  Affordable housing?  “…to be agreed”.
I asked what this scheme meant in terms of overall population level for the site.  “1200 to 1500” was the reply.
  1. Retirement flats. Mayfield want a care home that is not a care home or even fully sheltered.  The model is already in use in North America where people buy self-catering flats in village-like settings with options to use more help if needed and to have lots of facilities on site you do not have to travel to.  Older people’s need for chiropodists, hairdressers, etc would be met on site.
  2. Emerging design principles identify issues: Access/public space/Hove Station access.
 12/13.   Sustainability claims.
  1. Public realm ideas
  2. Drawings of the Sackville Road-facing frontages had Christopher Hawtree exclaiming that they looked like Furniture Village had been breeding! Uninspired and overbearing in scale opposite the Painters’ Corner Victoriana.  DO note the false scaling that makes multi-storeys blocks look smaller than 2-storey Victorian houses opposite.  Need a crying with laughter emoji here…

    Blocked out concept design of Sackville Road frontage proposal

  3. A look at an emerging Masterplan which BHCC appears to be lifting from the Forum’s six years worth of ponderings. HSNF may yet dump doing a Neighbourhood Plan and settle for influencing a council-led Masterplan.  Which would be fair and just but the public need to know It means a VAST amount of housing with THOUSANDS of new residents, people working there, impact on local amenity and streets use.
At this end of the exh. I met Mayfield’s Planning & Design Director, the really immensely charming Benedict Krauze.  If this scheme proceeds, and Moda buy the site, Mayfield would take a 125 year lease on the area it plans to put retirement housing on.

Heights    

At the exhibition, the highest buildings were trackside.  Up to 16 storeys, but at a Charette last Friday I heard this has been reduced to 11 – presumably after pre-planning advice.  The Charette was about planning strategy and the City Plan.

Updates

24.10.18….. Francine Grant emails me a few other details she picked up at the exhibition.  She gleaned from Mayfield that 250×2-bed retirement flats would cost £400,000 each (service charges extra).  She was further informed that the 600-650 rental units would be let at approximately £1,200 per calendar month on 3 year agreements, though which size of home that matches is not clear.  Francine looked up the company and writes “They’ve taken over Carillion projects in Manchester, etc, and were a small concern until they had an injection of millions from a German bank in 2016.  The only scheme that is just about happening is the one in Watford. There’s a Mayfield (retirement village) supposed to be planned in Romford, but information is a bit thin on thenet about anything”.
Charles Harrison emails useful comments too. “This rental home concept is the 7th location under development by Moda, with the first site, Angel Gardens – Manchester, accepting resservations from August 2018….no track record… as…nothing ready for occupation yet…to judge…this innovative “lifestyle” business model. He was, like me, concerned by the absence of architectural detail or any information about materials to be used.  Like I said….a lot like a PR exercise rather than a proper public consultation that would be listened to or result in any changes to the scheme.
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Moda will buy the Sackville Trading Estate if their plans achieve consent

22.10.18…..On 19/20 September, Moda Planning held a public exhibition of their longstanding plans for the Sackville Trading Estate – upstairs in the Honeycroft Nursery premises fronting Sackville Road, on the edge of the Clarendon & Ellen Estate.  I do wonder though how many people knew about it and what this exhibition looked to achieve.
It is now customary ahead of submitting applications to go through one of these “consultation” exercises and to add a document about it to the application submission.  This, however, felt more like a PR exercise for Moda Planning and Mayfield (putting a leaseholder occupied sheltered housing block at the northern end).
Whilst heights and shapes, access and egress were blocked out, there was a complete absence of architectural detail and, no, they are not going for outline consent, they will apply for full planning without offering architecture views to the public in any form of consultation first.
They have felt obliged to give space and influence instead to the Hove Station Neighbourhood Forum Committee – which is without standing to do anything except put a Neighbourhood Plan to a public referendum which, if accepted, would sit beneath the City Plan as something to take into consideration and no more.  After six years…..nada.  Until this happens and it is publicly accepted by a public vote, they have no authority to speak for, or advise on behalf of, the public.  The Forum Committee has piggybacked every scheme being planned in DA6 over 6 years, looking for credibility from association and encouraging provision of many, many, MANY hundreds of units of housing for the DA6 part of the City Plan instead of the level of density the public would accept and silly heights.
To understand how brazenly they exceed authority, one needs only to look at the 1-3 Ellen Street Report to the Planning Committee and warning in it to councillors on the committee.  Mike Gibson actually had the gall to cheat/speak as a supporter for that scheme’s developers at Planning on behalf of the Forum when he only had the right to speak as an individual.  Here is the entry on printed pages 30/31 of the report
5.13   Neighbourhood Area
The site also lies within the Hove Station Neighbourhood Area.  It is recognisedthe applicant has engaged the Hove Station Neighbourhood Forum in this proposal an approach that is encouraged and welcomed. Whilst initial draftdocuments have been prepared, no ‘formal’ pre-submissiondraft (page 30)
5.132    Neighbourhood Plan has been published to date. Little weight can therefore be given to the Hove Station 2nd draft Neighbourhood Plan which in general seeks to endorse the proposal. It is important to note that the local planning authority has raised concerns that some of the policies in the 2nd draft Neighbour Plan conflict with strategic policy, on this basis it does not therefore meet the ‘Neighbourhood Plan’ basic conditions (continued on page 31)
Residents attending the Sackville exhibition will not have known ANY of this when noting the developer had given exhibition space to them as something like a development partner!  And that is just SO WRONG.

The Moda/Mayfield Scheme

South of the access road a HUGE amount of rental housing south of the existing access from Sackville Road – 600 units in lots of up to 11 storey high rises is planned with the highest blocks trackside, to be managed by Moda who would buy the site from Coal Pensions if they get planning.   One new pedestrian access point would be introduced just above the railway line area using a staircase.  North of the existing access road from Sackville Rd would be the sheltered housing block (units for sale only).  There is STILL no new vehicle egress point.  All vehicle traffic is still into/out of Sackville Road’s existing point.
There is however one new move of huge value and import.  But the developers had to PAY a huge sum of money to Network Rail just for a first meeting to discuss issues and possible solutions.  The money would be well spent if consent is achieved and money for the engineering of a pedestrian bridge OVER the tracks from the development site’s easternmost point close to Fonthill Road can be achieved.  It involves use of the remnant tracks into the Sackville site becoming a green walkway and walking through what is to become a parking lot area to get to it.  It is the ONLY thing I feel able  to celebrate at this point, apart from a potential wide pedestrian stairway down near the bridge up into the site.
This drawing does not show the current Conway Street occupants – it shows some idea of some possible future scheme in order to make their drawing look more attractive.
The scheme is just massive and high rises at trackside are inhumane and make of the tracks a canyon.  They will loom up and upset residents on Conway Street and in the courtyard housing behind it which is trackside dead opposite.  But note   the indicated stairway access into the site bottom left corner of this elevation drawing below.

 

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King Alfred: 24 October Deadline for Crest Nicholson to confirm DA signing

23.10.18…..By Wednesday, 24th October, Brighton & Hove City Council expects to have received confirmation from Crest Nicholson of its commitment to sign the Development Agreement by December.
On 19th July, at Full Council, I asked after the King Alfred redevelopment timetable.  This followed a look at the Major Projects update in the 21st June Tourism and Economic Development Committee Agenda showing a lack of progress.
But come October, publishing of the PRG agenda and there was…..nothing.  So, in went a further query for the 11th October Policy, Resources and Growth meeting.  Confirmation of HIF funding, which has to precede signings, came on 11th September, I was told, and BHCC has written to Crest Nicholson requiring that a Board level confirmation be provided by October 24th of commitment to now sign the Development Agreement by the end of the year to allow public consultation on plans at the beginning of 2019. So I emailed Rob Starr!  PQ’s, BHCC responses and email from Rob: details below.
Starr is unconcerned, and continues to work with BHCC and Crest Nicholson to push things along.
My July 19 Question to Full Council
“I thought we would have had the King Alfred redevelopment before PRG and Council before the summer break for Councillors and we don’t have a council meeting now until October. In lieu of that may I ask you please for a quick update today to give us an idea of what the hold-up is about?”
Cllr Dan Yates Response
“I agree with you I would have liked to have this up and running and making more progress than we currently have. As you will be aware, in September 2017, the Council, alongside Crest Nicholson, its preferred development partner, submitted a £15.2m bid to the then newly launched Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF).  We were delighted by February’s announcement that the bid had been successful; the second largest marginal viability award in the country. Since that time we have been working with Homes England as part of their due diligence process and we hope to receive confirmation of the funding award and the contractual terms shortly, there lays the delay.
HIF funding is critical to the projects viability and the terms of the HIF funding will allow the Development Agreement (DA), something that is at an advanced stage, to be completed. We hope to be able to report to committee at the end of the summer.”
My Supplementary Question
“So by the end of the summer you have the HIF decision assigned, but I wonder about public consultation. Are there any dates in view as I know from Rob Star himself that he has already been up to London interviewing planning agents a couple of months ago now so by now there must be a date in the wind?”
 Cllr Dan Yates Response:
“The developer will begin the public consultation process as soon as the Development Agreement is concluded i.e. late summer/Autumn of this year and then hope the planning application will be submitted in the second half of 2019 and construction commence in the second half of 2020.”
 My Public Question to PRG on 11 October
“At the last Full Council meeting I enquired after the status of the King Alfred redevelopment and so was expecting this PRG meeting to carry a King Alfred item since I was given to understand formal public consultations would begin this autumn.  What further information on timings can you give us please?”
Cllr Dan Yates Response:
I have not had it provided by email yet to copy/paste, but you can view our exchange on the archived webcast (item 51 public involvement) providing the very useful detail I am able to pass on here.
Email with Rob Starr
I passed on the PQ info as well as concerns I had been hearing from a developer that the KA building costs were now understated by at least £50,000 sq m because of increases in construction costs generally which would require renegotiation or not signing the Development Agreement, seeking comment.
Rob Starr’s Reply
“The deadline is to sign the DA in December; which by default means we need to agree the final wording by end October.
As for viability, this scheme remains challenging and will probably see viability change throughout.  However everyone is committed, money is being spent, costs are constantly being reviewed (as they should be) and no one had suggested an increase in unit numbers or values.  As usual Chinese whispers which are wrong.
As for my position – same as always; I fight hard with BHCC & with Crest to get it across the line!
The deadline if December is fantastic as it means it has to now be done with no more delays.
By the way who is making up the stories about the changes to the scheme again! Utter nonsense.  The scheme being delivered is as per the bid won!”
Rob Starr’s further email
“To be clear for you – we have not amended the scheme we won the bid on.  It was always 565 flats, 20% affordable, a top of the range (at every level) Leisure centre and over 12000sqft of community space on the ground.  Also we committed to local trades on sight and to do everything we can to keep the sales local.  Nothing has changed on that at all.
Viability was always an issue on this development because it is very cash flow heavy (we have to build a leisure centre quickly and the entire site needs a basement) and of course the location.  None of it is a surprise.  Brexit of course was a surprise and the position of not knowing what will happen does make everyone nervous – people generally are waiting to see what will happen before they buy and sell properties as an example. So it is obvious that whilst building costs rise annually the values that come from them may (or may not) be affected by Brexit.  Fortunately a lot of this is simply confidence in the market and therefore once Brexit happens (in any form) confidence should rise and life should carry on.  Also fortunately this project timeline is such that we will start building around a year After the Brexit is a known thing and we would not be selling until 3-4 years after Brexit.  As such the timing for us has been very fortunate in that if we had been on site a year ago we would actually be facing a much harder viability situation than currently exists.  It would also be naïve to suggest that a project would not suffer viability issues; every project in every sense has to amend and update and change budgets; development is no different, and in fact I would suggest development is subject to more unknowns that most – as viability is known to be something that will always rear its head it is built into a plan to have the resilience to handle changes right from the beginning.  At the moment we (Crest & Starr Trust) are continually to invest time and money into this project with the view to be in DA end of this year and planning next year.”
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29-31 New Church Road: Redeveloping the Hebrew Synagogue – Rather Bigly!

BH2018/02126

20.07.18…..In common with Christian churches, the Jewish faith is suffering falling numbers who attend and keep synagogues viable.  The Planning Statement at 4.1 tells us that the proposed redevelopment of the New Church Road synagogue site “is aimed at retaining and attracting young families to the area to secure the future of the Jewish community in the City”.  An over the odds number of 4 bed units are planned.  Read the Application form for good detail – 103 bedrooms in 45 dwellings.  The terrace at the back will contain all the 4 bed housing, with 1x 3 bed.  This is where the family housing will mostly be, backing onto Carmel House.
For this post, I will consider the silent ‘partner’ in all this – adjacent  St. Christopher’s school, which will be conjoined at the boundary with access – and take a brief look at the Planning Statement.  You should look at the Design & Access links on the council website next and then pick at details.  Click on app ID number above to access all documentation.
St. Christopher parents & local resident comments will be most important to planners – how will you be impacted?

The proposal – it’s a LOT!

The scheme has been reduced somewhat since it was first shown to a handful of residents from New Church Road, Pembroke Gardens and Westbourne Gardens at short notice before Christmas, 2017.  The applicants have had pre-application advice and feedback from planning committee cllrs before submitting this final proposal and there have been further public consultation exhibits; but only on June 25th were the parents of existing adjacent St. Christopher’s pupils shown anything AT ALL and then with only a few days’ notice to attend!!!   What do parents of new children starting in September know?  Anything?
St. Christopher’s is offered use of two spare capacity class rooms in the new development which the Head and Board of Governors are welcoming.  Only about a dozen parents made that meeting and they were alarmed.  They pay about £10,000 a year for their small children to attend this prep school.  They have a financial interest in what the school is doing by merging its interests with those of the synagogue developers next door and concerns about how the very long period of demolition and building will impact on their children’s education if this goes ahead.  Once built a HUGE level of activity will be introduced to the site.  Noise impact.
Over and above that, there is a party wall involved and St. Christopher’s would have a doorway entry into the synagogue site’s classrooms – effectively the development physically joins the two sites together.  Given that this is an orthodox Jewish synagogue, there are grave concerns about security.  One parent wonders if the school would become a target for anyone wanting to access the synagogue site through St. Christopher’s to make trouble for what is planned to be a substantial Jewish commune/compound of 45 homes, synagogue, meeting place, etc.
The aims are laudable and deliverable considering who the backer is.  But have they bitten off more than the area can chew?  The freeholders for St. Christopher’s are believed to have engaged a Planning Consultant to deal with their application response.  Have contracts been drawn up with agreed detail for how these two sites will operate in tandem so that schmoozy promises about sharing classrooms is a commitment?  Has the school Head really looked into likely impact and whether it could affect numbers sending their children to this prep school in future?  The character of the existing school WILL change!  It is a consideration.
The ambitious plans for the site are rather wonderful in some ways, but possibly for a bigger site to be at its best – a 300 capacity social hall, situated adjacent the new synagogue, was touted at the parents’ meeting as a place where concerts could be held which is a nice prospect…but in the middle of a strictly residential area?  Where do people park?  Presumably weddings would take place in it too….where do guests park?  A lot of commercial activity is built into plans – and not just nursery school and housing capacity.  There is no other commercial activity in this strictly residential corner of Hove.  How noisy would they be arriving or leaving after an event in the social hall?  People chatter….laugh….and shout. And neighbours would be disturbed to the same level as in a city centre!

BIG COUNCIL FAIL HERE CONCERNING NOTIFICATION

Brighton & Hove City Council are making it very hard for the public to know about planning applications.  NO NEIGHBOUR CONSULTATION LETTERS?  AGAIN?  The Planning Register does not even provide details of where site notices are posted for this!  Such things tend to get pulled down or go where people may not ever pass to see them.  They claim ward cllrs get notified and it is their responsibility to tell you.  That is news to most cllrs by the way!  They claim advertised applications are published in the Brighton & Hove Independent. so you can see them there. Problem is, they only put their print edition (with adverts) into Hove Library and in front of one Blatchington Road newsagent and nowhere else in Hove!!!!  It is essentially a Brighton distributed paper.  It is a major blow to resident rights that letters notifying and inviting comment are not being produced. To save money?  No explanation!
So any of you reading this must spread the word!  Here is who ARE consulted – 25 official consultees who are not residents, including counter terrorism police (never seen that before!):

page 2 of 3 on the planning register for consultee comments tab

Parking

At 5.38 of the Planning Statement it gives that there are just 57 car park spaces and 96 cycle spaces proposed for this redevelopment.  If 300 people come to a social hall event, are they expected to arrive on foot? Or will they hunt locally for parking spaces?  In theory, given this is an  orthodox synagogue, people attending synagogue on the Sabbath will be walking and not driving (prohibited).  But otherwise, for events?  To visit?  For the facilities? For deliveries?

Trees

At 5.43 the existence of a LOT of TPO protected trees is addressed.  Only “most” are to be saved.  This is a serious issue to look at and object to if it involves loss of any elms as St. Christopher was responsible for the area losing about 14 mature elms to disease after they were careless in storing wood that bred the killer beetles.  All the trees are needed.

Affordable Housing

The 40% requirement is not going to be met.  There is no firm commitment.  They say this is a philanthropic project that will not generate any profit and is instead “under water”.  But they want to provide SOME affordable housing and at 7.5 say they are in talks with the Jewish Housing Association to see what can be organised.  Vague!  They will have to provide the arithmetic and Planners may well require that the District Valuer decides – at the applicants’ expense. This is what policy is quoted as saying, at 5.20:  “Policy CP20 seeks a provision of 40% on site affordable housing provision on sites of 15 or more (net) dwellings. The policy notes that this affordable housing target is subject to the costs relating to the development, in particular the financial viability of developing the site”.

I cannot get into greater analysis here, but would warn you that all comments must be in by mid August to be considered.  Note how many bedrooms altogether this development will provide to judge the compound’s likely population (a lot more than 45!) and consider how many more people would be on site in the offices, work spaces, bookable hall, shul, cafe, etc. to judge how much activity is likely to be generated and for whose benefit.  This WILL be a more or less exclusive religious compound.

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Crest Nicholson at Lyon Close: the now-registered planning application

BH2018/01738

14.07.18  I plead my fast reducing physical capacity (with apologies to those emailing for help) for this late post!  And with little time left for responses to the application.  You have until Tuesday, 17th to comment!  But there are already a number of objections in to take it to committee.  And I would assume that Cllr O’Quinn has asked for committee decision too.

Please note that you must register and log in to make an online comment.  Although I got a reversal of the decision to stop allowing emailed comments, I have not tested planning.comments@brighton-hove.gov.uk to see if it has actually been reinstated!  It is useful to email if you have photographic evidence to give in support of your position.

The First thing is to read The Planning Statement (the front end).  Then the Design & Access Statement and then go from there. 

My comments are as follows:
Good stuff:  I am pleased the trackside block was scrapped.  I am pleased the density came down – though not far enough.  I am pleased that there is a good level of affordable housing offered without quibble and battles and need for the District Valuer to be called in to decide what they can and cannot afford (so far).
Bad stuff:  The heights still concern.  And there is the question of why they could not have put in terraced housing with new little streets and private garden space?
In addition, the loss of the Goodwood GP practice meant an extreme amount of loading onto the Charter Medical Centre (which took their 10,000 list).  Charter are maxed out!  A further GP surgery is to close by Hove Station (northside) and that will result in a huge increase to the new Trinity surgery. There are 163 flats planned along with a big office space, but there are a total of 265 bedrooms so that is a LOT of new people (minimum) who will need to sign on with a GP.  Where?  Planners and councillors do not CARE.  They ALWAYS just assume that they will be filtered off SOMEWHERE.  Well they won’t.
There are 13 x 3 bed flats in the development and 86 x 2 bed flats.  That means families.  WHERE will their children go to school?  St. Ann’s Well Gardens is nearby so that will be where they play.
Residents close by are alarmed by the intensified use of the area for dwellings and how that will impact on Davigdor Road and Cromwell Road.  There are NO food shops anywhere nearby – just convenience stores (noted in the application even!).  This will force people into cars and onto the roadways to get to food shops (or rely on internet food shopping and deliveries).  BHCC are against adding food shops even whilst wanting masses of new dwellings in tight spots.  They need to sort their heads out on that little issue of logic!  And instead of an office block on site, consider a food shop which would benefit the wider area as well!!
No older or disabled person would be wise to consider living in Lyon Close unless shopping online.  Direct bus transport to a supermarket is restricted to a number 5 bus to Blatchington Road and the Co-op or to the Denmark Villas Tesco Express.  The walk to Tesco from Blatchington Rd is not quick or easy if carrying bags.  Maybe in time Wickes will close and become a supermarket.  I often wonder about  that.  But as it has a car park and there is another outlet there too, adding a food shop on the new development site would be compatible and wise.

Planning does not look enough at what is already missing in development hot spots over and above what impact new development is going to have.

There are 80 car park spaces planned (of which 8 disabled) and the usual huge number of cycle spaces – 188.  Perhaps they consider that the Wickes car park will absorb the rest of the need!  There are no restrictions on parking in it and it is generously sized.
Noise from the railway will need to be a consideration.  Even though trackside buildings are no longer proposed, the site is going to be noisy when trains go through and windows are open.  But many quite like the sound.  And it is not a heavily used track area.
I have few hopes of height or density reducing any further.  People will have their views about design.  And impact can be reduced by using subtle tones and materias that fit in (with the Willett Estate mainly) rather than stand out screaming for attention.  The development will mainly be visible from north of  the railway lines.
In August 2017 I wrote up my consultation visit with the Crest Nicholson developers.  The scheme has changed since then, but it is there for further reference.
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