New homes to bring cash windfall for Leiston

New development in an east Suffolk town looks set to generate £2million towards infrastructure improvements – and could help with the cost of a major revamp of its centre.

Permission has been granted for more than 400 new homes in Leiston, with an application for another 65 set to be considered by community leaders next week.

The 65 off Red House Lane and Poppy Way will generate £330,000 in Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) with 25%, £82,725, to go to Leiston-cum-Sizewell Town Council.

Recent consents also include 77 homes at St Margaret’s Crescent, 100 dwellings at Abbey Road, 187 dwellings at Johnsons Farm, Saxmundham Road, 20 in Carr Avenue and 18 in Valley Road.

In total, the developments should raise £2m CIL, with the town council due to receive a windfall of hundreds of thousands of pounds.

While the town council will have full control of its share of the CIL, the remainder will go into a pot for district-wide use – though needs in Leiston, including use for education and health provision, would be able to bid for it.

Community leaders have identified as a key project for the town the redevelopment of land between High Street and Sizewell Road, which could include creation of a new 1,720 sq metre town square for a weekly market and events, with 2,052 sq m ofnew shops around its edges. Homes could also be included in the mix, and some parking would be essential.

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The town council has teamed up with the district council in a partnership project to drive the development scheme – and other initiatives – forward.

The CIL money could help with aspects of the revamp once further details of the project, which is expected to involve various landowners and developers, have been drawn up.

Hopkins Homes is behind the latest housing scheme. Its initial plan for 188 homes off Red House Lane was rejected because of its size and level of impact and the new scheme is for fewer homes on a smaller site.

Planners are recommending the homes for approval subject to the conclusion of a legal agreement on affordable housing provision; and payment of a contribution towards a traffic light system at the junction of Waterloo Avenue, Station Road, High Street and Park Hill.

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