Resort housing could cross great divide

HOUSING on the Felixstowe peninsula could be set to cross the great divide - paving the way for future major expansion of the resort and nearby villages.

HOUSING on the Felixstowe peninsula could be set to cross the great divide - paving the way for future major expansion of the resort and nearby villages.

For the first time, planners are suggesting homes could be built on the arable fields on the opposite side of the A14, which has always been a barrier to development, separating the countryside from the urban area.

Until now enough land has been found for housing in the resort or the twin Trimley villages, but with sites for 1,620 new homes needing to be found, council officers are looking at fresh sites.

Setting a precedent by crossing the dual carriageway would also open up the expansion of the resort for the future.

Residents are to be asked their views on the proposals in a new eight-week period of consultation.

Proposals to build homes in Trimley St Mary and Trimley St Martin has already generated huge controversy with both villages opposed to large-scale development which would ruin their historic and rural character and create extra traffic and other problems.

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But a masterplan submitted by wealthy Trinity College, Cambridge for the twin Trimley villages and Walton suggesting 1,900 new homes could be built over the next 15 to 20 years has not been grasped at this stage.

Planners have decided 970 homes need to be built on the eastern fringes of Ipswich and 1,620 in the Felixstowe area, though this is still less than consultants say are needed to regenerate the resort.

Sites put forward in the document for the Felixstowe area are:

Fields on the north side of the A14 between the Trimley interchange and dock spur roundabout;

Land off Gulpher Road and Candlet Road;

An area of Old Felixstowe beyond Ferry Road;

The field between Reeve Lodge and the roundabout in High Road, Trimley St Martin;

Behind Orwell High School, alongside Walton High Road.

Suffolk Coastal officers stress it is “broad areas and not individual sites which are being considered” and they want people's views on whether the areas are suitable for development.

A council spokesman said: “At this stage the council has an open mind as to which is the preferred option or options. It is seeking the views of the public and interested parties to assist it in the decision making process.”

The council admits that some of the sites have been offered for development by landowners.

Where do you think the new homes should be built in the Felixstowe area? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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