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Ipswich: Tories’ key concerns over fringe development

PUBLISHED: 09:00 28 August 2014

Ipswich Garden Suburb artists impression - the

Ipswich Garden Suburb artists impression - the "lakes" in the foreground would only hold water after heavy rain.

Archant

There are several concerns highlighted in the opposition’s submission about the Ipswich Garden Suburb masterplan.

There are worries about roads, both access to the new community and the impact it will have on existing roads to the north of the town centre.

They warn that by only having access of Westerfield Road and the top end of Henley Road there will be serious congestion for traffic trying to get on or off the development.

And the added traffic will cause further congestion to the already-busy Valley Road area and will encourage much more rat-running along small roads in the area.

The opposition is disappointed there is not more being done to encourage cycling and the use of the historic “Fonnereau Way” bridleway as an alternative route to the town centre by pedestrians and cyclists.

This would allow people to reach the town centre through Christchurch Park, but it is ignored in the masterplan.

The opposition says the proposed new high school is in the wrong place because many of its students would come from outside the northern fringe – it would be better if it were nearer the centre of the development.

The design standard for the homes is very weak, meaning that very unimaginative houses are likely to be built – the opposition believes this is already happening with the first detailed planning application for homes off Westerfield Road already being submitted. And it is worried that the masterplan foresees most of the “affordable” homes being built towards the end of the development period – meaning they are not fully integrated and ghettos of affordable or council houses could be created.

The submission concludes: “The masterplan itself betrays the lack of thought and care that is required of a scheme of this size, explaining why so many basic errors around infrastructure and design quality have been made.

“Two examples suffice. First, the artist’s impression of the scheme from the north shows a series of ‘lakes’. These are not lakes but flood ‘events’. This is seriously misleading to existing residents and the community of Ipswich.

“Second, a cricket pitch indicated just to the north of the railway line in the north-west part of the development would, were it to be built, be on a slope.”

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David Vincent

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EADT writer David Vincent has more than 40 years experience in Suffolk. He has explored the highways and byeways of East Anglia, meeting homeowners, developers and estate agents from Bury St Edmunds to Aldeburgh and Colchester to Diss.

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