Sites needed for thousands of new homes

COMMUNITY leaders in Felixstowe are today calling for sites to be found for 2,720 new homes for the resort to ensure it has a vibrant future.Town councillors were warned the population would drop, the age range get older, schools close, and services, shops and leisure facilities would decline unless new homes were built.

By Richard Cornwell

COMMUNITY leaders in Felixstowe are today calling for sites to be found for 2,720 new homes for the resort to ensure it has a vibrant future.

Town councillors were warned the population would drop, the age range get older, schools close, and services, shops and leisure facilities would decline unless new homes were built.

The town council agreed most of the homes should go on one large site - but at this stage no land has been identified.

It is likely Walton and the twin Trimley villages will bear the brunt of the homes, but a third option could be to break through Felixstowe's northern boundary.

Councillor Andy Smith, chairman of the plans committee, said the advantage of one large site rather than several sizeable developments was the necessary infrastructure could be put in place.

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He said: “There are distinct advantages to having the significant majority of housing in one place because the infrastructure and community development would be better - there would be the chance to provide shops, community facilities, a primary school if necessary.

“But we don't mean in the narrow and bald sense that there will only be one site. We want to pick-up as many of the brownfield opportunities as possible and greenfield allocations will not be taken up until all these have been used.

“The building of housing will carefully phased according to need - this plan will last for 15 years.”

Mr Smith stressed to an extraordinary meeting of the council last night - which decided to go for the “going for growth option” - that no sites had yet been chosen.

He said: “At this stage it is about allocating numbers, not allocating sites. We will have a lively discussion at a later date as to where the blobs on maps should go.”

Councillor Mike Stokell disagreed with the view that one large site was best.

He said: “I feel one site might effect the existing residential amenity and two or three larger sites might be the right way forward - anyone living near the larger site is certainly going to be affected.”

Councillor Don Smith said there was also a need to look at how many students, and particularly staff, from the new university at Ipswich might choose to live in Felixstowe.

Where do you think 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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