Plan for Portishead jobs faces axe so more flats can be built

Housing-5

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More land earmarked for providing jobs in Portishead could be lost after a housing developer this week unveiled proposals to build more flats in the town.

Churngold Construction Ltd has teamed up with Barton Willmore to plan two blocks of flats off Wyndham Way.

The site, which is just off Sheepway, has previously received planning permission for a three-storey office block, but the development team say there is a ‘lack of market demand’ for it and therefore argue housing should be allowed instead.

Churngold wants to build 35 flats and says the area has ‘easy access to public transport’.

Similar applications to North Somerset Council have been submitted recently and only last month its planning committee allowed a further 69 homes to be built at the former Severn Paper Mill site, when job opportunities had been promised previously.

Furthermore, there is significant concern within the town that businesses will suffer from North Somerset’s plans to develop the industrial area of Old Mill Road to provide housing opportunities.

Churngold’s application shows it wants to house the flats within two buildings.

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The main one would have 32 one or two-bedroom flats over three floors. A small block would house the remaining three flats and would be built near Conference Avenue.

Churngold says preliminary discussions with North Somerset Council have been ‘generally positive’ and it has tried to mirror the size of the previously acceptable proposed office block to, in its eyes, ensure the development is not overbearing.

Its design statement said: “The site is well connected to the town centre via pedestrian links, as well as a frequent bus link.”

The scheme though has already provoked criticism from people living nearby. They have voiced concerns over limited school places in the town and it further adding to the area’s traffic issues. Parking is also an area of concern with fewer than two spaces per flat earmarked for residents.

Portishead Town Council will meet tonight (Wednesday) at the Folk Hall to discuss Churngold’s proposal and will make a recommendation to North Somerset Council. The meeting will start at 7.30pm.