Amended plans to Free Wharf development site
More new homes will be built at Free Wharf in Shoreham after councillors agreed to revised plans that include a range of environmentally-friendly improvements.
Approval was granted in 2018 for 548 homes at the former Minelco site in Brighton Road, but developer Southern Housing Group has now been given the green light to build an additional 39 flats, bringing the total to 587 properties.
The amended plans for the Free Wharf site will see the development include a minimum of 176 affordable homes, an increase of 12 compared with the 2018 scheme.
This complies with the 30% affordable housing requirement set out in the Adur Local Plan, although the new plans could see that increase to 55 per cent by unlocking additional Government funding.
The bulk of the new development will be heated by exhaust air source heat pumps, which will reduce carbon emissions. Air source heat pumps work by absorbing heat from the outside air and then transferring it to heat radiators and hot water.
To further cut pollution there will be 93 fewer car parking spaces than previously agreed, as well as up to 12 car club spaces. Car club is a scheme that offers new and existing residents in the area use of a car on a pay-as-you-go basis, which helps to reduce the amount of private cars and pressures on parking.
Although there is an increase in the number of homes, the height of the development will not increase. Instead some of the approved ground floor commercial space will be reduced and approved floor plans of the riverside blocks are selectively enlarged.
Delivering environmentally friendly houses to local people
Cllr Steve Neocleous, Adur District Council‘s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Strategic Planning, said: “We are under enormous pressure to deliver housing for local people and while there may be a modest increase in the number of homes from the original plans, this development will provide significant economic, social and environmental benefits for the long-term prosperity of Shoreham.
“We have worked very closely with the developers to ensure the new plans are as environmentally friendly as possible with heat pumps and a reduction in car space numbers linked to the introduction of more car club spaces to encourage more sustainable modes of transport.
“It is only natural that people will be concerned about how our roads, community spaces and schools will cope with the extra people moving in.
“The revised scheme at Free Wharf will provide more financial contributions towards these facilities than before and we will continue to push West Sussex County Council to use this in the delivery of the extra infrastructure to meet community needs.”
The scheme at Free Wharf also retains room for new businesses, cafes and restaurants, basement parking spaces for residents, and use of the recently reconstructed river wall for a new shared public footpath and cycleway, space for a roadside, cycle route in Brighton Road and areas of semi-private and publicly accessible open space.
The amended scheme at Free Wharf also includes the approved pair of riverside mooring pontoons and a revised public viewing deck at the end of Humphrey’s Gap, providing enhanced public access to the river, by comparison with the 2018 approval.