New developer named to deliver controversial 107 homes plan at St James' Hospital in Portsmouth
A NEW developer is promising to deliver 107 'high quality' homes, including affordable properties, at a controversial city site after securing a contract with Homes England.
Drew Smith will take proposals for the dwellings on part of land at St James' Hospital in Milton to the next stage, pending planning permission from Portsmouth City Council.
If approved the scheme will see a mix of family homes and three apartment blocks built, and four existing buildings, including the disused Harbour School, demolished.
Leanne Smith, business development director at Drew Smith, said: 'We are really pleased to be working closely with Homes England and Portsmouth City Council to transform this brownfield site with the development of 107 high quality new homes within the grounds of the former St James' Hospital.
'A high proportion of these new homes will be delivered across a range of affordable tenures, supporting the local authority and giving local people a fantastic opportunity to rent or buy in their local area.
'As part of Vistry Partnerships, Drew Smith and the wider business has had great success bringing forward new developments via DPP3, and we look forward to continuing this tradition in Portsmouth.'
It is thought the plans will include at least 30 per cent affordable homes as well as homes for families with specific disability requirements.
However, housing campaigner Councillor Cal Corkery wanted to be sure the stipulation for affordable homes laid out by Homes England would be maintained in the process. He said: 'I hope that Homes England have included in any such agreement strong conditions that guarantee minimum levels of affordable housing and environmental standards.
'If such legally binding guarantees have not been secured then Homes England have missed an opportunity to ensure that any development on the site is as affordable and green as possible.'
Plans for this section of the site have to date received 317 objections from local residents and councillors with concerns about loss of green space and the affect on infrastructure.
The scheme comes as part of a wider project for the hospital land, which includes 230 homes for the main hospital site provided by PJ Livesey and a 66-bed care home in the south of the site provided by LNT Care Development.