Green light for eight new homes in Southsea despite claims design is ‘grotesque’

CGI of the proposed eight-home development in Exmouth Road, Southsea
CGI of the proposed eight-home development in Exmouth Road, Southsea

EIGHT three-storey homes will be built in Southsea despite objections from nearby homeowners.

Councillors at a planning committee were unanimous in their approval of the development on a lock-up garage and workshop site on Exmouth Road.

As a result the existing garages will be demolished to make way for the dwellings.

Although the 11 off-street car parking spaces included in the designs are not enough under Portsmouth City Council policy, which would require 16 spaces, developers plan to raise the kerb to create five new on-street spaces.

A resident raised concerns at the meeting the development was a ‘grotesque design that will blight the landscape’.

But deputy council leader Steve Pitt commented: 'It's already a site that is earmarked for residential development. We are desperately in need of housing stock. I have seen this developer before and it gives me confidence that the work will be carried out properly.'

Labour Councillor Judith Smyth agreed.

'I have got every sympathy with the objectors,' she said.

'It is really difficult to have a development like this near your home.

'But the thing is about this area this bit of land has been allocated for housing for a long time. I do think we have a crying need for housing.

'I remember my children didn't like walking down that road at night with the garages there. This will be an improvement in that sense.

'The design of these is very much personal taste. I personally think the design is quite exciting.'

The new buildings will be made up of seven four-bed and one two-bed dwellings.

Speaking about the development applicant James Oliver said: ‘OMPD Ltd have worked very closely with the local planning authority over an extended period in order to provide this outstanding development of desirable housing which makes provision for 11 on-site parking spaces (and bicycle racks).

‘Currently a derelict commercial property the existing site utilises a dropped kerb along its frontage to the road, but the new scheme will remove this and provide an additional five spaces of on-road parking, this would exceed the criteria.’