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New look for former works

PUBLISHED: 22:00 03 November 2001 | UPDATED: 15:19 03 March 2010

A MAJOR scheme for industrial development of a Suffolk village seems set to be given the go-ahead.

Residents in Melton strongly objected to a proposal to turn the former Girdlestone Pumps site into office blocks.

A MAJOR scheme for industrial development of a Suffolk village seems set to be given the go-ahead.

Residents in Melton strongly objected to a proposal to turn the former Girdlestone Pumps site into office blocks.

But following a site visit, Suffolk Coastal District Council is now on course to approve the application for the two-storey office building.

Melton Parish Council, the Highways Authority and Suffolk Preservation Society were all against the plans for the site, as well as nearby residents as it was felt the village would not be able to cope with the influx of traffic.

The plans include a two-storey S-shaped building and space for 56 cars, although a further outline planning application for the area could see up to 200 spaces.

At peak periods there is already heavy traffic congestion at the junction of Station Road and Wilford Bridge Road and protestors fear further strain would be put on the crossroads.

Long queues and heavy delays are commonplace already and with committed development at RAF Bentwaters, the Highways Authority are concerned at the effect of more traffic being encouraged into the area.

Station Road is also becoming a rat run as a short cut between Melton Street and Wilford Bridge Road and residents already have difficulty getting out of their properties.

Although the authority recommended a full transport assessment, planning officers at Suffolk Coastal felt that this was not warranted given the availability of public transport in the area.

Residents sent in 12 letters of objection stating that the 1440 square metre steel framed building was the wrong size development for the location.

It was also pointed out that the area was already becoming saturated with development with many units standing empty on the Technicraft site and a business park set to open at Bentwaters.

Concerns were also raised about the loss of trees and green areas.

But planning officers said in a report that the design, siting and parking layout is acceptable and have recommended the plans to be approved at a meeting of the south area development sub-control committee on Wednesday.

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