Controversial £4.2m housing development for Portsmouth gets go ahead

A CONTROVERSIAL £4.2m housing development will be built in the city, despite protests from neighbours over the 'dire' parking situation.

Monday, 24th August 2020, 12:45 pm
Updated Monday, 24th August 2020, 1:56 pm
How the council homes in Doyle Avenue could look. Picture: Portsmouth City Council

During a recent virtual planning meeting Portsmouth councillors approved proposals for 16 affordable homes, including seven houses and nine flats, on the corner of Doyle Avenue and Northern Parade in Hilsea.

The development - which has been put forward by the city council - will be built on the site of a former health clinic that was demolished in 2013 and is currently used as parking. It will feature cycle storage and parking spaces for 12 cars.

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How the council homes in Doyle Avenue could look. Picture: Portsmouth City Council

Under council standards the site should provide 29 parking spaces, prompting concerns from local residents.

During the meeting a deputation from nearby Westwood Road resident Janet Rennell-Smith was read out.

She said: 'Alexandra Lodge, an old people's home with adequate parking provision was replaced by a much higher structure of Maritime House and the Victory Unit.

'Unfortunately although we were promised it would not impact on the area the woeful underestimate of parking requirements for staff and residents caused a huge parking problem for the surrounding residential area.

How the council homes in Doyle Avenue could look. Picture: Portsmouth City Council

'This has been exacerbated by Northern Parade School expanding and losing staff parking, which has spilled out into the residential area.

'The surrounding roads are past saturation point as confirmed by the highways engineer. Evenings and weekends are dire as people are parked illegally over junctions.'

Tory councillor Terry Norton requested that the plans were refused. He said: 'This does not meet parking standards. What's the point of having minimum standards if we're constantly going to put things through that don't obey those standards at all?'

However, Lib Dem councillor Lee Hunt said: 'The city council is under huge pressure if I may say from the Conservative government to build 12,000 new units of accommodation in our city and that's what we're trying to achieve.

'If we're to get anywhere near the numbers of homes that are needed then this sort of application should be welcome. It isn't over-intensive.'

As previously reported council officers estimated the development could cost around £4.2m.

Five councillors voted in favour of the scheme, with four against and one abstention.

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