Decision on 160 homes at Lower Graylingwell next week

Derelict former NHS buildings on the lower Graylingwell site where 160 homes are set to be built
Derelict former NHS buildings on the lower Graylingwell site where 160 homes are set to be built

Detailed plans for 160 homes south of the former Graylingwell Hospital site could be approved next week.

The site, which contains two boarded up former NHS buildings and a derelict farmhouse, was previously earmarked for starter homes by the Government, but these proposals were dropped last year.

Instead the land, south of Graylingwell Drive with access off Kingsmead Avenue, will provide 30 per cent affordable housing, split into 34 affordable rented units and 14 shared ownership dwellings.

The farmhouse is set to be converted into a four-bedroom dwelling, while the existing sports pitch is set to be restored and improved, alongside the creation of a new combined sports changing and community pavilion.

Outline permission for land south of Graylingwell Drive has already been granted by Chichester District Council and a reserved matters application is due to be debated by its planning committee on Wednesday January 17.

Planning officers are recommending approval, but Chichester City Council has raised concerns about the layout of the homes and building design.

In particular the city council has highlighted the three-storey blocks of flats and social housing concentrated on the site’s northern boundary.

Meanwhile 44 letters of objection have been received by the district council.

These raised concerns with the scheme’s density, traffic, and the concentration of the tallest buildings in one part of the site.

The Chichester Society highlighted similar points, while a representation from the University of Chichester Students’ Union described the site layout and orientation on the western boundary as ‘unacceptable’.

The objection stated it would result in an ‘unsatisfactory relationship’ with the university and students’ union building.

In their conclusion, officers said: “Lower Graylingwell is a major housing site in the city and whilst the intended accelerated construction cannot be guaranteed, the timely delivery of new housing is important to the council maintaining its five year housing land supply.

“Whilst officers understand that certain elements of the application have proved to be more challenging, on the whole this is a good scheme which will deliver much needed affordable and market housing. Based on the above it is considered the proposal complies with development plan policies and therefore the application is recommended for approval.”

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