COMMUNITY leaders are today looking at a number of options for the future of the area around Felixstowe’s seafront leisure centre.

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The area is set to be developed with new attractions and facilities as part of the multi-million pound project to build a new pier.

A variety of ideas have already been suggested, including an open-air events arena in front of the leisure centre in Undercliff Road West, and extra car parking, cycle route and gardens behind it in Sea Road.

Joseph James, programme manager for Felixstowe Futures, said: “A number of options for each parcel of land around the boating lake and pier are now being considered.

“The next stage will include setting up meetings with stakeholders to seek their input and views on what could happen in the area.

“In the short term, funding opportunities will be explored for temporary solutions to work along side the pier development. Felixstowe Futures will lead on both the short-term solutions and the longer over-arching strategy for the area.”

Initially some of the derelict boating lake area will be used as the construction compound for the pier.

It is hoped some work will begin on the pier this year – with demolition of the section stretching out over the sea.

Meanwhile, Felixstowe Futures is helping the pier owners to co-ordinate the approval needed for works required for coast protection, including alterations to the prom and alterations affecting the sea walls. Work is progressing satisfactorily.

The prom will need to be raised to the height of the sea wall at the pier to provide a level access for people with disabilities. There will also be a pathway leading over the top toprovide access all year round.

The new pier will be a two-storey seaside entertainment complex, featuring a function suite seating 325 people, cafes, restaurants, bowling facility, leisure attractions and a high-tech observation deck to watch the shipping.

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