Fresh bid to build new flats in Ipswich’s Upper Orwell Street

PUBLISHED: 13:14 19 January 2020

The site in Upper Orwell Street, Ipswich, where the flats are planned Picture: JUDY RIMMER

The site in Upper Orwell Street, Ipswich, where the flats are planned Picture: JUDY RIMMER


Another attempt to get planning permission to build new flats on empty space in Upper Orwell Street in Ipswich is to be made in the spring.

Just three months after a similar application was thrown out by Ipswich Council's Planning and Development Committee, property company Derrivo has submitted a new bid to build 18 flats on a site that was cleared of derelict buildings a few years ago.

It wants to create 18 one and two-bedroomed flats between the street - which is home to several takeaways - and the car park behind.

A similar application was submitted in July and was considered by the committee in October. It decided that, while the principle of homes in Upper Orwell Street would be acceptable, the application was not good enough and did not include enough outside space.

Now Derrivo has held more talks with planning officials and submitted a new application for the same number of flats on the site.

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There have been some amendments to the original plan and the developers propose that 15% of the flats (three) should be offered as "affordable" homes for rent from a housing association or the council.

But it is not clear what the council's attitude is likely to be to the proposal when it is considered by the committee during the spring.

That part of Upper Orwell Street, known locally as The Wash, has been causing concern for local residents and planners for many years.

At one stage it was proposed to be included in the Cloisters and then the Mint Quarter developments - but those schemes fell through in the recessions of the early 1990s and the late noughties, leaving the area unloved and increasingly derelict.

The buildings on that part of the street were demolished in 2014 and turned into a temporary green area, although developing it for residential use was always on the cards.

Any new building on the site would be a boost for the area which is also waiting to see the restoration of St Michael's Church on the other side of the road.

The building was seriously damaged by fire eight years ago as it was waiting to be restored by the Jimas Community Project - a Muslim-based organisation aiming to bring the community together. The group is still working on the restoration.

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