Decision due on seven-storey block of flats in Eastbourne

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Controversial proposals to build a block of flats in Eastbourne are to be considered by town planners next week. 

On Tuesday (October 22), Eastbourne Borough Council’s planning committee are to consider an outline application to build a seven-storey block of 29 flats in place of a pair of semi-detached homes at 54 and 56 Upperton Road.

54 Upperton Road (photo by Google Maps street view)

54 Upperton Road (photo by Google Maps street view)

According to council papers, developers already have planning permission (approved at appeal after first being refused back in 2008) to build a block of 12 flats on the site, which could be built out at any point.

The larger scheme, however, has proven to be highly controversial with planners receiving 123 letters of objection from residents on a variety of grounds, including parking and design.

In a report recommending the application be approved, an Eastbourne planning officer said: “The principle of the demolition of the existing buildings and erection of a block of flats has effectively already been secured by the previous permission on appeal. 

“The commencement of this permission means this could be fully implemented at any time.

“No objection has been raised by ESCC Highways, who have confirmed that the 21 car parking spaces shown to be accommodated on site are in line with the car parking demand calculator.

“It should also be considered that the site is a sustainable location, with good public transport links, and a short walk into the town centre.

“Therefore in principle there is no objection to the proposal. The layout, design and landscaping are reserved matters for consideration under separate application.”

While details of the design would be considered as part of a separate application, objectors say the site could not support a block of 29 flats without overshadowing and overlooking of its neighbouring buildings. 

This would include the flat blocks Lullington House and Selmeston House, objectors say.

Objectors also disagree with the ESCC Highways view that 21 parking spaces would be enough for the 29 flats, arguing it would lead to an increase in on-street parking in Upperton Road and nearby.

For further details of the scheme see application reference 190626 on the Eastbourne Borough Council planning website.