28 / 03 / 2018

Alternative parking arrangements and a package of sustainable transport measures are underpinning fresh plans for a new block of flats in Bournemouth town centre.

Durley Road

A planning application for the scheme, a five-to-six-storey building of 44 apartments replacing the Durley Road car park, has been submitted to Bournemouth Council.

The £13 million scheme is being brought forward by the Bournemouth Development Company, a joint venture between Bournemouth Council and Morgan Sindall Investments.

A previous application for planning permission was turned down in summer 2017 on grounds of design and loss of parking.

Since then, work has been under way on a revised proposal incorporating architectural changes and a range of parking mitigation measures and transport solutions.

Duncan Johnston, Director, The Bournemouth Development Company, said: “We’ve listened carefully to parents at nearby St Michael’s Primary School, residents and other stakeholders to gain a better understanding of their concerns. We have also continued to survey and understand public use of this and other local car parking facilities. These have helped us to identify spare capacity on-street and in Council-managed off-street car parks, for instance the under-utilised Avenue Road.

“In our application, we are proposing a comprehensive solution that provides convenient alternative parking spaces, a safer environment around the school for drop-off and pick-up and active encouragement of more sustainable transport to reduce congestion.

“This is an exciting, positive proposal with many long-term benefits. It provides much needed homes for people who want to live in the town and support the economy and aligns with other objectives of the Town Centre Vision. But we are aware of earlier concerns and we will continue to engage, listen and respond”.

An earlier exhibition of plans in November 2017 gave parents, local residents and other members of the public the chance to question project team architects and consultants in transport planning about the proposals.

BDC have been particularly keen to respond to concerns from the school, parents and residents about congestion and road safety in streets surrounding St Michael’s. The application includes proposals for long-awaited investment in the highway that will introduce reduced speed limits, wider pavements, safer crossing points and other measures to encourage walking and cycling to school for families living in the area.

Pending the council’s determination of the planning application, further stakeholder consultation and detailed design work will be carried out.

The proposals feature a mix of one, two and three-bedroom flats plus residents’ parking. The homes will be for market sale and are designed to meet a rising demand in central Bournemouth from first-time buyers, young professionals, downsizers and families.

The Durley Road car park has been designated for residential use in Bournemouth Council’s Area Action Plan for several years.