Young people flats 'no problem'
RESIDENTS were today reassured that new flats for single people and couples will not mean noise and rowdiness disrupting their neighbourhood.People living in the Cobbold Road area of Felixstowe say they have no objections to the new development – as long as it does not disturb them.
By Richard Cornwell
RESIDENTS were today reassured that new flats for single people and couples will not mean noise and rowdiness disrupting their neighbourhood.
People living in the Cobbold Road area of Felixstowe say they have no objections to the new development – as long as it does not disturb them.
But they do not want to see a "welfare to work" scheme with young teenagers left to fend for themselves in flats.
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A similar scheme in for youngsters in Walton caused problems last year when householders living there found their nights disturbed with noise from late-night parties, though the situation is now under control and the culprits evicted.
The new project will see the dilapidated building The Rosery – formerly an old people's home – on the corner of Cambridge Road and Cobbold Road, and the car workshop and showroom next door, redeveloped to provide 14 flats.
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Borg Construction Ltd are carrying out the development, but it is intended Flagship Housing Group will take over the properties to provide affordable housing for single people and possibly young couples.
This will then free-up under-occupied family housing elsewhere in the town and help to ease the resort's housing crisis.
Jonathan Sullivan, group director for Flagship, assured people that the new scheme would not be like the Walton one.
"We have a lot of three-bedroom houses where one person, quite often an elderly person, is living alone or houses where couples are living and they do not want or need such a big property," said Mr Sullivan.
"We are working with the council to try to provide an attractive scheme so we can say to some of these people, 'Do you really want a three-bed house with all this garden? Would you prefer instead a really nice flat in Felixstowe and would you consider moving?'
"No pressure would be put on anybody, but our hope is that the project on those lines would release some family accommodation for those in housing need."
The Rosery development would be high quality and very attractive, and there would be a mix of older single residents and couples, but not necessarily very young couples because of concerns over lifestyle clashes.
Suffolk Coastal council, which is expected to help financially with the scheme, says how the project is managed and who the occupiers will be is not a planning issue.
Its development control sub committee will discuss the scheme at its meeting on Thursday and will be told officers are happy with the plans as long as a satisfactory design is received.
A sum also has to be agreed as a contribution towards play facilities in the town, which every house builder now has to pay, around £550 per dwelling.
The scheme will involve refurbishment of the Rosery, a two-storey property with a four-storey tower, while the car showroom and workshop will be demolished to make way for a two-storey extension.