A five storey development with 14 flats in Shoreham has been unanimously approved by committee members.
The Brighton Road development, which will replace a vacant two storey building previously used for business, will house three studio flats, seven one-bed flats and four two-bed flats.
There will also be space for a restaurant, cafe or drinking establishment on the site, which is opposite the Adur Civic Centre at the junction with Brighton Road and Eastern Avenue.
The application from developers Summertown Limited was unanimously approved at a meeting of Adur’s Planning Committee on Monday (February, 6).
Councillor Geoff Patmore said it was an ‘excellent’ and ‘innovative proposal’ and applauded its inclusion of solar panels.
But councillor Ken Bishop was concerned that the seven car parking spaces provided would not be sufficient.
“Brighton Road is a nightmare at the moment,” he said. “It isn’t going to get any better.”
However councillor Stephen Chipp dismissed the problem and said a lot of the studio flat residents were unlikely to have cars.
He added that this kind of accomodation was ‘the most popular type of property.’
Councillor Brian Boggis agreed that ‘small properties for a single person’ were in demand and said: “We are badly in need of such accomodation.”
He believed the location of the site gave a ‘natural discouragement to use motor vehicles’ and said: “There’s easy access to the town centre and shopping facilities and bus routes outside.”
He also noted that the overall design was ‘complimentary’ with the initial proposals received for the Minelco site, which lies directly south.
The top storey was similarly set back, agreed case officer Gary Peck, which would alleviate common ‘concerns with bulk in locations like this.’
“We do feel it’s in keeping with what may or may not happen in the future,” he said.
The absence of affordable housing was raised by councillor Les Alden, but he was told the current policy in the adopted Adur District Local Plan did not require affordable provision for developments with less than 15 dwellings.
He said he noticed the development’s 14 dwellings was ‘one less than 15’ and said: “It’s surprising how many applications I have seen for 14 dwellings.”
A policy that would mean such developments were required to include affordable housing was due to be tested in the Local Plan Inquiry last week but was not currently being applied.
The Environment Agency, which had initially objected to the development, removed their objection subject to an additional flood risk mitigation condition.
The development is subject to several planning conditions, including a full contaminated land investigation and details of how to protect rooms from excess noise.
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