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Bournemouth Scheme Described As “boring”

Posted by Richard Ward in

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

The chairman of Bournemouth council's planning board has described plans for a new student accommodation development as "boring, square and dull".

Plans to redevelop Richmond Gardens were recently presented to councillors during a pre-application presentation by developers Summix and Evolve. Two previous applications to develop the site were approved in 2009 and 2013 but subsequently lapsed after it was deemed the site wasn't viable.

New plans have now been drawn up and are due to be formally submitted in the summer. However, councillors have expressed their disappointment with the information provided, with chairman David Kelsey suggesting the scheme isn't suitable for the area.

The council's town centre strategy seeks to develop the area to provide 150 extra residential units and increase the car parking spaces by 34.

Under the latest proposals there is no change to the car park and the proposed development would only include student accommodation.

Jim Tarzey from advisory firm Pegasus Group said of the scheme: "The previous scheme was approved in 2009 and then that was renewed in 2013 and marketed as having planning permission. However, no company felt that it was financially viable or a deliverable scheme."

"This scheme has progressed quite nicely recently, and we are confident we now have a scheme which can be delivered."

Under current planning rules, student accommodation counts towards the council's house-building requirements, which would allow it to meet planning strategies.

The formal planning application for the development is expected to be lodged early in the summer.