Town council opposes bid for 15 apartments at Woodbridge police station site
PUBLISHED: 13:45 30 April 2016 | UPDATED: 18:07 30 April 2016
Plans to turn an empty police station into housing have been knocked back at the second time of asking.
Woodbridge Town Council dismissed a bid to redevelop the vacant property in Grundisburgh Road – little more than a year after objecting original proposals.
Last year, Marden Homes was denied permission to replace the 1930s building with six detached and semi-detached homes – a revised version of an application withdrawn for design amendments to be made.
This week, the company returned to the council’s planning committee with a bid to convert the station and redevelop the site with 15 apartments. But it was again met with disapproval for failing to address concerns about parking and traffic.
Local resident, Adrian Ratcliffe told councillors the junction with neighbouring Moors Way was “extremely narrow”, and that the scheme appeared “overdeveloped”.
Grundisburgh Road householder, Brian Brackley raised concerns about existing foul sewage and surface water drainage, highlighting Anglia Water’s suggestion that connections be diverted to an alternative manhole in order to accommodate the development and avoid flooding.
Mr Brackley said: “We’re not against development – we’re against ‘this’ development.”
Meanwhile, the highways authority wanted to see plans revised to include more than 15 spaces for cars, in order to avoid on-street parking.
It also noted the absence of areas for bin storage or presentation.
Councillor, Geoff Holdcroft said there was general consensus that the site was “ripe for redevelopment”.
He said the number of parking spaces would be more acceptable if the site was closer to the centre of town, where residents would be more likely to walk or use public transport.
Councillor Veronica Falconer called the plan “poorly designed”. She said many problems could have been addressed by advanced consultation with neighbours.
Mayor Josh Sayles said the developer had been constricted by requirements for the front of the old building to remain intact.
“I’m not averse to the density,” he added. “But fewer flats would allow more room for parking.”
The application is pending consideration by the district council.