Martlesham retirement homes project set for approval

An artists' impression of the proposed new complex in Martlesham Picture: FEILDEN AND MAWSON

An artists' impression of the proposed new complex in Martlesham Picture: FEILDEN AND MAWSON - Credit: Archant

Plans for a new retirement complex in the heart of Martlesham Heath are set to go-ahead - despite objections from community leaders.

Developers McCarthy and Stone plan to build a total of 41 one- and two-bedroom apartments, as well as a public car park, on land just off The Square, in Eagle Way.

But Martlesham Parish Council has objected to the development for a number of reasons with one of its concerns being that the creation of the new 43-space public car park on part of the old aerodrome runway would mean less spaces for drivers than currently.

The council is also concerned that the flats would "dominate" the area and harm would be caused to the attractiveness of The Green and the village centre, both key parts of Martlesham's specific and original design as a "modern village".

It said the scheme was also contrary to Martlesham Neighbourhood Plan policies.

East Suffolk Council has also received 30 letters of objection from residents on grounds including poor design, loss of parking, pressure on services, and loss of open space. 

McCarthy and Stone believe the design is "in keeping with the character of the local area" and the development would introduce much-needed homes for over 55s in the community.

The company said: "The development proposal provides much sought-after over 55s accommodation in a key location within Martlesham Heath village centre."

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Members of the district council south planning committee are recommended to approve the project on April 27 with officers saying it is close to the village centre and "is a sustainable form of development that meets the growing demands of an ageing population".

Planning case officer Rachel Lambert said: "It provides for beneficial use of previously developed brownfield land and enhancement of its surroundings via a building of reasonable design quality that outweighs the loss of the parking facility and includes the provision of a required cycle lane link on Eagle Way, which is a significant benefit of the development.

"The proposal also delivers a beneficial improvement to the cycle route network, addressing a current ‘missing link’ on Eagle Way between the village centre and the pedestrian and cycle bridge."

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